In Kenya, over 73% of the population rely on traditional cooking methods that use biomass fuel in a ‘3-stone fire’. However, the burning of biomass poses a significant health threat, as it is a major contributor of household air pollution- the fourth largest death and disability risk factor in Kenya. Reliance on wood fuel for energy, and the growing population, are significant drivers of deforestation, placing a heavy burden on those who have to travel to collect the wood fuel, predominantly women and children.
Improved cooking solutions, that reduce the demand for wood fuel, are key to improving energy access, decreasing dangerous exposure to household air pollution, and relieving the pressure on local environments. They also greatly impact the lives of the women and children who are primarily responsible for wood collection and cooking, saving them valuable time every day, which can be spent on other activities.
The project distributes improved cookstoves to households across Kenya. The project has achieved high levels of market saturation, ensuring that as many households as possible can benefit from the improved stove technology. The project works with local community groups to demonstrate the correct usage of the stove to build a strong local understanding of the technology in order to ensure that the stoves are suited to the local context and the dangers of fuel combustion are reduced as much as possible.
Each improved cookstove saves at least 50% of wood required for each household, reducing the hours that women spend collecting wood fuel, and alleviating the pressure of wood demand on the local environment. With the significantly reduced fuel consumption and increased thermal efficiency of the cookstove, household air pollution and carbon emissions also correspondingly drop, greatly improving the well-being and lives of thousands of families.