Today, UNHCR, in close collaboration with the UNO of Ukhiya Mr. Nizam Uddin Ahmed and partner Bangladesh Red Crescent Society (BDRCS), provided liquified petroleum gas (LPG) canisters and stoves to more than 5,770 vulnerable local Bangladeshi families. All families will also receive training on the safe use of LPG for cooking in the home.
In 2018 UNHCR began the distribution of LPG to Rohingya refugees in Cox’s Bazar in an effort to reduce deforestation. This program, in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), was further expanded in 2019 to include the most vulnerable Bangladeshi host community families in the Ukhiya and Teknaf Sub-Districts.
“We appreciate the generosity of UNHCR and Its partner BDRCS for their continuous support to the local community, especially those affected by the influx. The environment is one of our priorities and this initiative to provide LPG and stoves is a remarkable step”, said Mr. Nizam Uddin Ahmed, the UNO (Upazila Nirbahi Officer) of Ukhiya sub-district at today’s event in Ukhiya.
To date, some 46,000 Bangladeshi families have received LPG and stoves. A recent study by UNHCR and partner IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) showed that the overall market demand for firewood in Ukhiya sub-district has dropped by a remarkable 92%. Thanks to this intervention, the rate of LPG use in the host community has increased from just 7% to 20%, resulting in a 53% reduction in the demand for firewood among them. The combined target is to reach 71,000 host community households.
LPG support is supplemented by cash support for the most vulnerable which is being provided by UNHCR, while over 30,000 local Bangladeshi families benefitted from this support in 2020 alone.