Watch PBS NewsHour special correspondent Fred de Sam Lazaro’s report on cookstoves, including one locally made in El Salvador.
Open-flame cookstoves used inside people’s homes cause an estimated 2 million deaths per year worldwide due to lung disease and burns, reports PBS NewsHour special correspondent Fred de Sam Lazaro on Wednesday’s broadcast. In response, advocacy groups have been working to find low-cost, efficient and safe stoves that are appealing to the local community and lucrative for manufacturers to produce.
The assumption was everyone would embrace newfangled clean-burning stoves, but that’s not always the case, said Radha Muthiah, executive director of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, a consortium of public and private advocacy groups and manufacturers. “Cooking patterns are different … cultural patterns are different,” and people want a say in what they use, she explained.
“The first principle of stove design is find out what people cook … what they use for fuel, and reduce that fuel and design a stove for what they want to cook,” said Nancy Hughes, founder of StoveTeam International, a Eugene, Ore.-based organization that helps entrepreneurs in Latin America develop factories that make fuel-efficient cookstoves.
For example, in Mexico, the boxy brick and cement Patsari stove has round metal pans on the surface for cooking tortillas and other local favorite foods. The stove is fueled with biomass plant material, dung or wood. Image courtesy of Mexican manufacturer Gira, A.C.
Unlike other stoves made of mud, the Berkeley-Darfur stove distributed in Sudan is composed of steel and is meant to last longer. It is shipped from India and the United States as a flat kit and assembled in Darfur. The manufacturer’s suggested price is $8-10. Image courtesy of Berkeley, Calif.-based Potential Energy
DR Congo, Haiti, India
The pricier Prakti single-burner charcoal stove is manufactured in India with a suggested price of $40-50 for use in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Haiti and India. Its approximate lifespan is four years. Image courtesy of Prakti Design
Learn more about India’s use of clean-burning cookstoves in Lazaro’s Dec. 17, 2009, report.
The CleanCook double-burner is made of stainless steel and can accommodate different types of food made in a pot or skillet. It’s fueled by ethanol/alcohol and is designed to last 10 years for use in Madagascar, Mozambique, Nigeria and South Africa. Image courtesy of Dometic Group in Sweden
The stainless steel Save80 stove requires only a small amount of wood, fed through the sides. It is used in Chad, Ethiopia, Lesotho, Nigeria, Rwanda, Togo, Uganda and Zambia. Image courtesy of the German manufacturer, Atmosfair
See more stoves and test results in the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves’ Clean Cooking Catalog. View all of the PBS NewsHour’s Social Entrepreneurship profiles and tweet us your suggestions for more groups to cover.