Search Icon White

ISO TC 285 on Clean Cookstoves Releases Committee Drafts for Sustainable Cooking Technologies under U.S. and Kenya Leadership


The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Technical Committee (TC) 285, Clean cookstoves and clean cooking solutions, has developed two Committee Drafts (CD) that support cooking system performance. These advancements are intended to provide cleaner sustainable cooking technologies, as health studies show that exposure to cookstove emissions, particularly in underdeveloped countries, is tied to a wide range of health effects and pollution. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) serves as the ISO TC 285 secretariat in partnership with the Kenyan member body to ISO, the Kenya Bureau of Standards.

Formed in 2013, ISO TC 285 provides governments, industry, and organizations around the world with the opportunity to become involved in the process of designing, implementing, and updating standards related to clean cookstoves and clean cooking solutions. The TC operates with four active Working Groups (WGs) that focus on the potential development of standards and other essential documents in subject areas associated with clean cookstove technology. These groups include WG 1, Conceptual framework,WG 2, Lab testing methods, WG 3, Field testing methods, and WG 4, Social impacts.

Jim Jetter, senior research engineer at United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) serves as project leader for WG 2. Mr. Jetter, with support from Richard Ebong, the Convenor from the Uganda National Bureau of Standards, and with input from 60 international experts, leads the development of ISO/CD 19867-1 that will soon proceed to DIS (Draft International Standard).

ISO/CD 19867-1 Harmonized laboratory test protocols -- Part 1: General laboratory test sequence, is intended for use as laboratory measurement procedures to determine performance for cookstoves used primarily for cooking or water heating in the developing world. Its purpose is to provide metrics that can be used to indicate a cookstove's performance under various controlled conditions.

This part of ISO 19867 provides a standard test sequence that can be used to compare the performance of various cookstoves and fuels under the specified conditions. ISO 19867 was developed to achieve two goals: (1) greater alignment in methodology and metrics around the world; and (2) adaptation of methodology and metrics to the wide variety of cookstove fuels and cooking practices that exist in the developing world.

Another recently approved CD is ISO CD 19868, Clean cookstoves and clean cooking solutions -- Guidance on field testing methods for cookstoves, under the direction of acting convenor Tara Ramanathan, StoveTrace program director at Nexleaf Analytics, U.S. This International Standard will provide field testing methods to evaluate cooking system performance. Field measurements of cooking systems are essential to understanding in-use performance and to provide input metrics for impact evaluations. All elements of the cooking system, such as cooking practice, fuel type, fuel quality, cookstove characteristics, and environmental conditions, affect performance, and field tests provide measurements that capture elements of the system that are infeasible to bring to the lab.

The standard, intended for manufacturers, implementing organizations, researchers, governments, or other entities that need to evaluate cookstove performance in the field, is projected to:

1) Provide quantitative measurements of cooking system performance. Guidance is provided for evaluation of adoption rates, fuel consumption, power, emissions, safety, and durability. These measurements can be obtained from uncontrolled and controlled cooking tests. However, guidance is provided for uncontrolled cooking tests, not controlled tests.

2) Provide methods for measurements of indoor air pollution and personal exposure to PM2.5 and CO.

3) Provide guidance for field assessments that compare cooking system performance metrics to defined performance levels, or to a counterfactual, which assesses if the new cooking system is improved compared to what would have been observed without the implementation of a new cooking system.

In addition to its leadership role as TC 285 secretariat with Kenya, ANSI also serves as the U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) administrator to ISO TC 285, with technical and financial support from the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, part of the United Nations Foundation. Ms. Sally Seitz serves as the U.S. Secretary and Dr. Ranyee Chiang serves as the chairperson through 2019.

Read more about the effects of cookstove emissions and related EPA research.


Jana Zabinski

Senior Director, Communications & Public Relations


[email protected]

Beth Goodbaum

Journalist/Communications Specialist


[email protected]