Access to Cooling initiatives

There are many new and exciting initiatives on Access to Cooling, as well as organizations dedicated to finding and deploying solutions. Check back regularly for updates on new initiatives.

Prizes and funding

Off-Grid Cold Chain Challenge

The Global LEAP Off-Grid Cold Chain Challenge is an international competition that identifies and promotes the most energy-efficient, sustainable and cost-effective technologies designed for use by smallholder farmers and producers that can meet cold storage requirements for fresh fruits, vegetables, fish, and dairy products.

The 2022 Global LEAP OGCC is accepting nominations from cold chain suppliers, distributors and companies from June 29 to August 29, 2021.

Sustainable cooling in the Indian hospitality sector

IFC's TechEmerge is partnering with Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) to accelerate the adoption of energy-efficient, affordable, climate-smart cooling technologies and business models in the growing hospitality sector. TechEmerge offers a total pool of USD 500,000 in grant funding for competitively selected pilot projects. 

Ashden Award for cooling in informal settlements

This award, supported by the Clean Cooling Collaborative in partnership with Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL), will spotlight the best initiatives alleviating heat stress, and help make solutions accessible and affordable to those in greatest need. It focuses on affordable non-mechanised cooling solutions, such as temperature-lowering roof and wall adaptations, natural ventilation systems, evaporative cooling and the use of plants, trees and structures to provide cooling shade.

Fair Cooling Fund

A new fund is helping seven organizations in India, Egypt, Rwanda, Ghana and Colombia develop and scale up innovative sustainable cooling solutions. It is provided by the Clean Cooling Collaborative and administered by climate solutions charity Ashden. Featured solutions include solar-powered refrigeration for small-scale farmers and low-carbon cooling for slum houses. Tackling inequality and empowering women are key features of the funded projects.

NDC Support Facility for Efficient, Climate-Friendly Cooling, Clean Cooling Collaborative

The NDC Support Facility provides funding and guidance to organizations to support governments that want to integrate cooling solutions into the next round of their country’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), which are expected to be submitted during 2020. The NDC Support Facility’s focus is to unlock the significant contribution that efficient, climate-friendly cooling solutions can make to climate and development goals, whilst simultaneously complementing the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol, which aims to phase down super-polluting hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).

The Facility has up to USD 12 million available for technical assistance to improve access to and the efficiency of cooling in developing countries. The application window is now closed.

The Chill Challenge, Engineers Without Borders USA

The objective of the challenge which was launched in September 2019 is the development of refrigerators and icemakers that are significantly more affordable for off-grid communities than currently available units. EWB-USA awarded grants ranging from USD 30,000 to USD 50,000 to seven teams to build and test prototypes. The winners were announced in May 2020.

The Global Cooling Prize, Rocky Mountain Institute

The Global Cooling Prize is rallying a global coalition of leaders to solve the critical climate threat that comes from growing demand for residential air conditioning. By harnessing the power of innovation, we can provide cooling solutions that enhance people’s lives without contributing to runaway climate change.

How? This ground-breaking competition is designed to incentivize the development of a residential cooling solution that will have at least 5 times less climate impact than today’s standard refrigeration and air conditioning units. 

This technology could prevent up to 100 gigatons (GT) of CO2-equivalent emissions by 2050. It will also put the world on a pathway to mitigate up to 0.5˚C of global warming by 2100, all while enhancing living standards for people in developing countries around the globe.

The Million Cool Roofs Challenge, NESTA, the Global Cool Cities Alliance

The Million Cool Roofs Challenge is a USD 2 million global competition to rapidly scale up the deployment of highly solar-reflective “cool” roofs in developing countries suffering heat stress and lacking widespread access to cooling services. 

The Challenge will award USD 100,000 grants to up to ten teams this year to deploy solar reflective coating and/or materials in an eligible country between August 2019 and December 2020. From there, USD 1 million will be awarded in 2021 to the team that has demonstrated the best sustainable and transferable model for the rapid deployment of cool roofs in an eligible country and that best meets the judging criteria. 

The application window has now closed. You can read about our ten finalist teams here


Clean Cooling Collaborative

Clean Cooling Collaborative is making climate-friendly cooling accessible to all. A philanthropic initiative of ClimateWorks Foundation launched in 2017 as the Kigali Cooling Efficiency Program (K-CEP), the Clean Cooling Collaborative focuses on super-efficient refrigeration and space cooling equipment, climate-friendly refrigerants, passive cooling, and integrated solutions that cool people and the planet.

Read the 2017-2021 impact report

The GCCA (Global Cool Cities Alliance)

The GCCA approach is to cultivate partnerships with cities and other stakeholders to give them the tools and support they need to identify successful policies and programs, adapt them for each city’s unique characteristics, and connect with experts and partners to help with implementation. GCCA works with companies and governments to help grow new markets for technologies and materials. It also links the diverse world of experts and researchers who study urban heat islands and cool materials

The GCI (Green Cooling Initiative) 

The aim of GCI is to establish a global Green Cooling Network, which will accelerate the transfer of environmentally friendly technologies in the refrigeration and air conditioning sectors to and within developing countries. This website is a knowledge base for green cooling technologies, data emission scenarios and a platform for the Green Cooling Initiative Network. Decision makers, technology suppliers and importers, research institutes, NGOs as well as government institutions are all invited to join.

The Cool Coalition

We are a member of the Cool Coalition, a global multi-stakeholder network that connects a wide range of key actors from government, cities, international organizations, businesses, finance, academia, and civil society groups to facilitate knowledge exchange, advocacy and joint action towards a rapid global transition to efficient and climate-friendly cooling. Cool Coalition members are collaborating on science, policy, finance and technology to meet growing demands for cooling in a comprehensive manner, all aimed at raising climate ambition in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals while complementing the goals of the Kigali Amendment to the Montreal Protocol and Paris Climate Agreement.