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Nearly 3 billion people in the developing world cook food and heat their homes with traditional cookstoves or open fires. 2 million premature deaths occur every year due to smoke exposure from these methods. Women and children are the most affected
This is from the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves is an aid organization with an express sole purpose: To foster the adoption of 100 million clean cookstoves by the year 2020.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that exposure to smoke from the simple act of cooking is the fifth worst risk factor for disease in developing countries, and causes almost two million premature deaths per year – exceeding deaths attributable to malaria or tuberculosis.

This is not just a worldwide health concern, it is an environmental one as well. These open stoves generally burn biomass, wood,for example, which produces black carbon and methane which help contribute to global warming.  Additionally the use of these biofuels can lead to increased deforestation.

This video just highlights some of the facts:

Nearly 3 billion use polluting, inefficient stoves or open flames to cook their food

Exposure to cookstove smoke kills nearly 2 million people every year.

Girls spend as many as 20 hours a week collecting fuel. (Less time for education).

Exposure to cookstove smoke doubles a child's risk of contracting pneumonia.

Women and girls are at risk of violence while gathering fuel.

Clean cookstoves save families fuel and money.

Stove users can pay for their new stove with the money they save on fuel.

A clean cookstove can reduce carbon emission by up to 3 tons per year.

Stove companies create local jobs and improve livelihoods.

This video is an example of how clean stoves can provide local benefits in a variety of ways.

I highly encourage people to look through the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves to see the importance of this initiatives to improve the lives of billions around the globe.

Originally posted to Gangster Octopus on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 12:21 PM PST.

Also republished by Black Kos community.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Clean Water is also important (5+ / 0-)

    one of my old high school friends has been heading up a project called KWENCH designed to help in this area.

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 12:39:01 PM PST

  •  Probably Work As Wood Gassification Twig Stove (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    HoundDog, KenBee, Larsstephens

    It would need a roll of heavy mesh or a pipe with many air holes in the middle, and then it would be filled with twigs by hand.  

    There’s always free cheddar in a mousetrap, baby

    by bernardpliers on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 12:43:05 PM PST

  •  I had no idea we have been losing so many people (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to such sad tragedies.

    Thanks Gangster.

    The means is the ends in the process of becoming. - Mahatma Gandhi

    by HoundDog on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 12:47:02 PM PST

  •  Thanks. (7+ / 0-)

    Son's master's thesis is on this subject. He is a mechanical engineer exploring development and use of solar cookers in a particular region of India. Women and girls gather firewood, leading to vast deforestation and preventing education and economic development. I will send him a link to this.

    Thanks again.

    •  good for your son... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Melanie in IA, ImpactAv

      (why am I not surprised...)

      This machine kills Fascists.

      by KenBee on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:19:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ditto - I use a Sport solar oven (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Melanie in IA, KenBee, bluedust, Odysseus

        It's made by the Solar Oven Society.

        When I bought mine their website specifically said that they charged people in the US double in order to provide a free one to people in developing countries.  Last I looked they had changed it to say "profits" went to providing ovens in needed areas.

        I still think it is a very worthwhile cause.  Plus, I use mine regularly and it's FUN!

        •  The real problem is providing (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ImpactAv, KenBee

          ovens to cook the way the "native" people cook. The temps needed in the morning for breakfast, and in the evening for that meal, cannot be achieved by a regular solar cooker, at least for the population my son is trying to help. Also they cook inside. So the solar cooker must be "chargeable" outside but used inside.

          It's a huge problem to provide what they will actually use. Not a simple thing.

          Thanks for your generosity in paying double, nonetheless. I don't mean to diminish that or the product of your efforts.

          •  I hadn't considered that (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Melanie in IA, KenBee

            Maybe education and flexibility are key.  Breakfast would be a problem unless it is mostly left over breads served cold.  The evening meal is really where the solar oven works best.  It's like a crock pot - slow cooker.  Of course geography is also an issue.  Some parts of India may not be suitable for a purely passive solar oven.

          •  If the alternative to slow cooking is rape (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ImpactAv, Odysseus

            I think the women will figure it out. I would assume"native" people could adapt their cooking if it meant saving their daughters.  

            •  Agreed, but solar cooking is also outside (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Melanie in IA

              Granted it would presumably be closer to the home and therefore other people. It would alleviate the necessity for distant gathering of fuel.  It may increase safety during certain times, but I don't see it as a panacea for violence against women.

            •  which part are you blaming them for?? (0+ / 0-)
            •  Really I can't tell you how offensive I find this. (0+ / 0-)

              Tempted to HR

              •  My 2 cents (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Melanie in IA, bluedust

                You and bluedust are not understanding each other.

                You are pointing out a very valuable practical limitation on any new technology whether it be fuel or stove or whatever.  How do you get people to adapt to it so that it really works in THEIR real world?

                Bluedust is pointing out a completely different problem, but one that might be solved, or at least ameliorated, if your question could be answered.

                I don't see a big conflict, but that's just my 2 cents, you can argue it if you wish.  IMHO an HR would not be justified.

                •  While I get your point (0+ / 0-)

                  (which is why I didn't HR), bluedust is blaming them for being raped. This is not acceptable under any circumstances. NEVER.

                  Thanks for your measured response.

                  •  Melanie, I'm not exactly sure how you read (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Melanie in IA, ImpactAv

                    what you did in my post, but perhaps I can elaborate a little and be clearer.  

                    From what you have posted, I surmise that in India where your son is working, the principal obstacle to adaptation to the cooker is the slowness and location of the cooker, because the women want to cook differently. The deforestation problems alone are not sufficient to induce immediate adoption of a solar cooker (just as global warming is insufficient reason for many Americans to lower the thermostat in winter). I also surmise that there are no internal courtyards in the Indian homes your son is working with (as perhaps Moroccan women would have), or it would be easier for women to use the cookers in their homes. So there are very real inherent challenges that need to be overcome before women adopt the cookers.  

                    The location I was referencing was not India. In the refugee camps in the Congo, women are attacked when they leave the camps to gather wood for cooking.  In those places, women have readily adapted to the slower cooking methods of the solar cookers when these are available because they have a compelling safety reason to do so.  In these cases, there is no issue with insisting cooking be done inside, or under cover. The cooking is done out of doors, but inside the refugee camp. This helps tremendously in preventing women from being exposed to army men who rape women in a systematic way as a war tactic.  Here is a link from PBS about sexual violence in the Congo. PBS  Women do not need to be "educated" about their self-interest in those instances and my post was intended to be sardonic.

                    In no reality based world is a woman ever responsible for rape, and as a survivor myself, I found your incorrect insinuation that I would imply that offensive, although I tell myself short posts by strangers are inherently rife with misunderstanding.  I find myself truly surprised that you could have inferred what you did from my post. The truth is I found your use of quotes around the words "native" condescending and Euro-centric, and perhaps you did not intend them that way,  or you did not realize that you were coming across that way, or perhaps I misunderstood you. Once again, the internet is not always the best communicator.

                    ImpactAv is correct that we were addressing two different issues related to the same topic.

                    I hope that clears up a misunderstanding.

  •  See also (4+ / 0-)

    Helps International Stove project-

    They make ceramic stoves in South America- the locals make the stoves, providing employment, the families buy cinderblocks to place them on, so they have skin in the game, and a rain forest tree is saved per week per stove.  they cost $100 in donations, and you help save the rainforest, prevent cataracts due to smoke, prevent terrible childhood burns and prevent the awful emphysema in the entire population from four years old on up due to the current smoke in the houses.  It is a win win win.  The stoves last for generations.

    Helps International takes a hospital to Guatemala each year to do hysterectomies on the women who blew out their pelvic floors carrying wood and cataracts for those blinded by the smoke.  It is much more efficient and humane to prevent the injuries in the first place.


    As my father used to say,"We have the best government money can buy."

    by BPARTR on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:04:54 PM PST

    •  As an additional win (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KenBee, splashy

      they give the women 6 chicks and some feed.  With the extra time the women don't spend gathering and carrying firewood from miles away, they have time to raise the chicks.  In 6 weeks, they sell the chickens and buy more chicks creating money for the faimly and protein for the community.

      As my father used to say,"We have the best government money can buy."

      by BPARTR on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:07:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  all those excellent reasons, but not strong enough (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    the rapes that happen to wood gatherers are just off the scale of evil.
      imo  leading all the other good reasons listed.

    This machine kills Fascists.

    by KenBee on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:18:33 PM PST

  •  This turns out to be surprisingly hard to do. (0+ / 0-)

    We know how to make a safer stove, and it's not that expensive.  But so far, as I understand it, there are too many problems (overall fussiness, breakability, etc.) and people who adopt them don't stick with them by the time of the second or third follow-up visit.

    You know, I sometimes think if I could see, I'd be kicking a lot of ass. -Stevie Wonder at the Glastonbury Festival, 2010

    by Rich in PA on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 01:55:12 PM PST

    •  Do you have a cite for this? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I would be interested in seeing it.

    •  Yes and No (0+ / 0-)

      If you design the stove with the users and build a support infrastructure within the local community, people continue to use the stoves.  Unfortunately, the Global Alliance likes to parachute in mass produced Chinese stoves and neither adapt them to the local cooking practices nor build a local supply and repair chain.

      They also don't pay enough attention to building chimneys for the stoves they do install.

      At least, this is what I understand from a friend who is working with Maasai women on more efficient stoves in Tanzania:

      Solar is civil defense. Video of my small scale solar experiments at solarray.

      by gmoke on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 03:32:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  you might like this link: (0+ / 0-)

  •  Here's a stove that works (0+ / 0-)

    and generates electricity as a by-product, enough to charge and run a cellphone or tablet.

    The BioLite HomeStove is a biomass (read:wood-burning) fueled ccokstove that emits 95% less smoke than traditional fires, while using 50% less wood.

    The company also makes a campstove version, which they demonstrated in NYC during the Sandy aftermath, brewing cups of tea and allowing folks to recharge their cellphones and stuff. BioLite Campstoves in New York After Sandy

    "Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati" - Red Green

    by FlashfyreSP on Fri Nov 30, 2012 at 04:04:39 PM PST

  •  Thank you, GangOct! (0+ / 0-)

    I am thrilled to be able to send links on this to my husband who sometimes raises his eyebrows at the amount of time I like to spend on Daily Kos!

    He has a small treeplanting project in Zambia to address the serious deforestation in Mapangazya District, largely because of need for cooking fuel. He's also tried to introduce Rocket-type stoves there but we've run into issues with local potters not being able to manage the tight ratios to maximize efficiency and the pre-made Chinese models are too expensive for the subsistence farmers who most need an alternative to the millenias-old three-stone cooking fires.

    We currently live in Tanzania with an organization where we partner with various local development groups, offering small-project funding and capacity building. I am especially happy for the link to ICSEE as one of our current partnerships is with a Maasai group.

    Thanks so much for putting this information out there!

    There is no worse enemy of God and Man than zeal armed with power and guided by a feeble intellect... --William James

    by oslyn7 on Sat Dec 01, 2012 at 01:09:54 AM PST

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