Purpose and Goal
Photo: Erin Patrick, Women’s Refugee Commission.
CHF fuel-efficient stove training, Zam Zam camp, North Darfur, September 2007
The purpose of the international network on household energy is to be a key multi-sectoral mechanism for NGOs, researchers, technical experts,international organizations, the private sector, government agencies,donors and others to share, receive and discuss information regarding household energy-related initiatives and technological innovations for use in humanitarian settings worldwide, including both conflicts and natural disasters. As such, it helps to identify and institutionalize solutions to the security, environmental, technological, health and other concerns that arise around firewood collection and household energy use and supply in humanitarian settings worldwide.
The collection, supply and/or use of firewood and alternative energies in humanitarian settings has been associated with a variety of harmful consequences, including but not limited to: rape and assault during firewood collection, environmental degradation, and respiratory and other illnesses caused by the indoor burning of biomass materials. These consequences span traditional humanitarian response sectors and rarely fit neatly into the existing mandates of operational NGOs and UN agencies. As a result, household energy-related initiatives are often ad hoc and do not take into account the lessons learned in other sectors or regions.
To address these concerns, a two-part mechanism for developing a coordinated global response to the multi-sectoral challenge of household energy in humanitarian settings has been designed: 1). an Inter-Agency Standing Committee Task Force on Safe Access to Firewood and alternative Energy in Humanitarian Settings (IASC Task Force SAFE); and 2). the International Network on Household Energy in Humanitarian Settings.
This Network was established by the Women’s Refugee Commission in June 2007, and formally endorsed by IASC Task Force SAFE in December 2007.
To see the Network’s Terms of Reference, and for more information on how to join the Network, please click here.