M&S and UNICEF Financing Projects that Tackle Climate and Health

We are delighted to announce the issuance of carbon credits from a micro-programme of activities based in Bangladesh. This project was developed by UNICEF with funding from British retailer Marks and Spencer (M&S). This initiative improves the health and lives of vulnerable children while cutting carbon emissions that cause climate change. The investment by M&S kick-started the project, enabling 40,000 fuel efficient, low pollution cook stoves to be manufactured, sold and maintained by local entrepreneurs in Bangladesh. The project was implemented by Bangladesh Bondhu Foundation with support from the German Development Organisation GIZ.

The project demonstrates how innovative partnerships can drive finance into projects that tackle both climate and health issues whilst also providing a unique opportunity for the private sector to advance multiple sustainability goals simultaneously, including empowering women, creating economic opportunities for communities, and improving access to clean energy.

Our role within this programme is to help UNICEF and M&S maximise the climate and development impacts of these improved cookstoves. By creating the robust criteria by which the outcomes of the project needs to be assessed against, and regularly measuring and verifying these outcomes, we provide certainty that every dollar invested in this project is reducing carbon emissions and delivering life-changing socio-economic benefits.

Motivated by its ambitious sustainability strategy, Plan A 2020, M&S has built off this positive experience with UNICEF, to be the first in its sector to commit to increasing the focus on clean cooking. Working with the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, M&S plans to work with its suppliers to understand how employees of M&S suppliers of products such as textiles, coffee and food currently use cookstoves; promote the UNICEF project; and work with the UK government’s Department for International Development to raise awareness and share its experiences.

We applaud and admire M&S’s leadership in wanting to protect the planet and its people, and we hope that the benefits this sustainability plan has delivered will encourage more corporates to do the same.

The project benefits in a nutshell:

  • 45665 stoves have been installed
  • Each stove reduces consumption of more than one tonne of fuel wood every year
  • Each stove reduces emission of more than one ton of CO2 per year
  • The project reduces indoor air pollution – helping to improve the health of predominately women and children
  • Around 150 local jobs have been created
  • The project is increasing awareness among the rural people on the dangers of indoor air pollution, climate change and the benefits of economic fuel usage.
  • The project has created a local market for improved cookstoves.
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