90% of the energy demand in Eritrea is derived from burning wood and charcoal, however, presently <1% of Eritrea is forested. The scarcity of wood coupled with high demand has put increasing stress on the natural environment, and on those who travel great distances and spend considerable time collecting fire wood, predominantly women and children.
Reducing the demand for wood fuel is key in easing both the pressure on local environments, and the burden of purchasing or time and effort spent collecting wood. CO2balance are partnering with Vita to certify their Eritrea projects under the Gold Standard.
The stove was designed specifically for the context of Eritrea, based on traditional cooking methods, and using locally-available supplies, and local women’s groups are trained in the construction techniques required for building the stoves. Each stove reduces fuel consumption by more than half, and a chimney means that household air pollution from smoke is minimised. The reduced wood use also means that fewer trees need to be felled for a community’s energy requirements, and less time is spent collecting firewood. This allows women and children more time to spend doing other household tasks, study, or participate in income-generating activities.