Efficient Cookstoves for Zambia
A simple, everyday activity like cooking puts a significant burden on rural Zambian households and their surrounding environment. Cost of fuelwood bites off a considerable part of the family budget, speeds up deforestation and toxic indoor fumes increase risk of health problems. The efficient Cookstove Program promotes, distributes, and helps install fuel-efficient cookstoves to replace inefficient, three-stone fire stoves. The new, clean stoves combust firewood more efficiently, reducing the need for wood fuel and cutting carbon emissions. Faster, cleaner cooking also frees up time for women and girls to engage in learning and community activities and means better indoor air quality and improved family health.
At least 70% of Sub-Saharan Africans live in rural areas and 95% of them rely on solid wood fuel for cooking. Most households cook on smoky, inefficient, three-stone fires using large branches and logs from trees on farmland and surrounding forests. Open fires achieve only partial combustion of wood while releasing toxic fumes indoor. The use of open fires for cooking is one of the world’s most pressing health and environmental problems, directly impacting close to half the world’s population and causing nearly 4 million premature deaths each year, according to the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves. Household air pollution is the second leading health risk factor contributing to child pneumonia and premature death in Zambia.
How It Works
Efficient cookstoves replace inefficient, three-stone fires and traditional pot support and combust firewood more efficiently, concentrating the heat to where it is needed most. The result is faster, cleaner cooking with less fuel burned, less carbon emitted and fewer trees cut down.
Clean cookstoves help in reducing the need for fuelwood, thus supporting forest conservation efforts. The new stoves help reduce time and drudgery collecting firewood and significantly cut harmful cooking smoke. Improved indoor air quality reduces the risk of premature death and respiratory diseases, reduces medical costs, and improves productivity. At scale, the program removes approximately 41,046 metric tons of CO2 per year – the equivalent of taking 8,715 cars off the road for a year.
Facts & Figures
- Promotes energy-saving, clean stoves in rural communities in support of the government’s efforts to cut forest loss, clean up cooking, improve family health, and fight climate change
- Discourages indiscriminate firewood collection, significantly cutting forest loss in the long-term
- Helps ease rural life by cutting costs and reducing the time of collecting firewood and cooking
- 41,046 metric tons CO2e removed per year – the equivalent of taking 8,715 cars off the road for a year
- Certification Standards: UN Clean Development Mechanism