Italian energy company Enel and the World Food Programme (WFP), the UN agency that provides food assistance and logistics support in humanitarian emergencies, unveiled a plan to combine forces at the UN Climate Change Conference in South Africa.

The innovative approach will address the impact of climate change on hunger and undernutrition while also reducing WFP’s carbon footprint.

The partnership was announced by WFP Deputy Executive Director for Hunger Solutions, Sheila Sisulu; Coordinator for WFP’s Office for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction, Carlo Scaramella; Enel Director of Regulations, Simone Mori; and the Head of Carbon Strategy at Enel, Giuseppe Deodati.

Supported by Enel’s multi-year commitment of up to €8 million, it includes agreements signed by two Enel companies and by the Enel Group’s non-profit organization to support WFP humanitarian and environmental protection programmes.

The three main components of the Enel-WFP agreement are:
  • Enel Trade will support high-efficiency cooking stoves projects, partly through WFP’s SAFE initiative (Safe Access to Firewood and Alternative Energy in Humanitarian Settings). The SAFE project reaches schools, community centres and poor households to provide a means to cook WFP food rations, protect women against violence during firewood collection and decrease deforestation and carbon emissions by using less fuel. Through SAFE, WFP has already distributed more than 140,000 stoves in Sudan, Uganda, Sri Lanka and Haiti to 927,000 people. Enel Trade and WFP will analyse the use of “green” stoves to develop a business model to generate carbon emission reduction credits.
  • Enel Green Power will install solar panels to cut greenhouse gas emissions at UN Humanitarian Response Depots (UNHRD), which are managed by WFP on behalf of the humanitarian community. The pilot sites where Enel will conduct feasibility studies are located in Brindisi (Italy), Panama City (Panama), Dubai (UAE) and Accra (Ghana). UNHRDs are used to pre-position, store and handle emergency supplies and support equipment, allowing the humanitarian community to deliver emergency relief items as soon as they are needed.
  • Enel Cuore, an independent, non-profit organization within the Enel Group, will support WFP’s activities in Latin America in countries where the Enel Group is present.

A framework agreement for cooperation in the fight against world hunger and climate change was signed in June 2011 by Enel CEO and General Manager, Fulvio Conti, and WFP Executive Director, Josette Sheeran.

<i>For more information visit the World Food Programme and the UN News Centre.</i>