The Government of Rwanda has announced an agreement with KOKO Networks (“KOKO”) to develop the nation-wide renewable cooking fuel utility that is said to be the first in the world, an initiative that will increase the use of clean energy for cooking in the East African country.
KOKO, Kenya’s clean energy firm has partnered with Dalberg, a global group of businesses that builds an inclusive and sustainable world, to establish KOKO Rwanda, in order to develop a nation-wide network that is expected to enable convenient clean fuel access for all Rwandans.
Network of Bioethanol Cooking Fuel ATMs will enable convenient access to ultra-clean cooking fuel for all Rwandan homes, replacing deforestation-based charcoal.
According to Rwanda Development Board (RDB), Rwanda is targeting universal access to clean cooking by 2030, in order to solve the deforestation, carbon emissions, and indoor air pollution deaths caused by the use of charcoal and wood for cooking, which is still prevalent in Rwandan homes today.
KOKO has developed a proprietary climate-tech platform for the low-cost delivery of bioethanol cooking fuel, which has been proven at scale in Kenya. Households use a modern 2-burner bioethanol KOKO Cooker with a smart KOKO Canister that enables access to a dense Network of high-tech “KOKO Point” Fuel ATMs, which in turn are refilled by a fleet of Smart MicroTankers. KOKO’s cloud software manages the flow of payments, fuel, appliances and carbon.
Clare Akamanzi, CEO of, Rwanda Development Board, commented: “The protection of our natural environment is a strategic priority for Rwanda, both nationally and in line with our international climate commitments. Equally, clean cooking is an essential part of Rwanda’s efforts to meet the UN Goals around Health, Gender, and Economic Development. We are pleased to partner with KOKO and Dalberg to enable the rollout of this important climate technology solution for the benefit of all Rwandans.”
Under the agreement, the Government of Rwanda will provide the enabling policy environment including removal of VAT and import duties on equipment and ethanol fuel, with the full benefit of these cost reductions passed to households via lower consumer prices. KOKO Rwanda will deliver the technology, capital, and expertise to build and operate a nation-wide Network, leveraging private climate finance of USD 25 million to create 500 direct jobs and new income streams for thousands of small business partners.
Greg Murray, CEO of KOKO, commented: “Through this agreement, Rwanda takes a real leadership position in the fight to protect Africa’s forests through replacing demand for deforestation-based charcoal, while also saving the lives of women and children. Consumers want ultra-clean cooking fuel available at very low prices within a short walk of their home. Our platform enables this when combined with fiscal policies that level the playing field with charcoal.”
James Mwangi, Executive Director of Dalberg said the partnership with Rwanda and Koko will create a new climate venture: “We are pleased to partner with KOKO and the Government of Rwanda in building a transformative new climate venture. Dalberg has been deeply engaged with the clean cooking sector for over a decade and has seen KOKO prove its unique platform at scale. This agreement represents a unique and compelling combination of leading-edge technology, private climate finance, and policy best-practice, and is an example for other nations who seek to get serious about solving the dirty cooking fuel crisis.”
Koko said Rwandan households can expect a modern, safe, clean, and affordable cooking experience. The clean energy tech firm says its fuel, the first consumer offering, https://theexchange.africa/countries/kenya/kenya-now-home-to-worlds-first-smart-fuel-atm/serves over 1.5 million Kenyans with sustainable bioethanol cooking fuel every day.
According to the climate tech firm Over 7,000 deaths per year from household air pollution from dirty cooking fuel, over 19,000 hectares of forest per year are destroyed to supply Rwanda’s capital Kigali charcoal market, and the average time per week that women & children spend collecting wood.
KOKO plans to roll out a “dense” Network of KOKO Point Fuel ATMs in partnership with local shopkeepers in Rwanda, who will earn new income streams to complement their business. Customers will buy their KOKO Cookers, refill their Smart Canisters, and access other useful products and services from the KOKO Points.