TWP / AHDESA, Honduras, Fuel-efficient stoves





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Published on Feb 25, 2008

http://www.ashdenawards.org/winners/t... TWP and AHDESA won an Ashden Award for Sustainable Energy in 2005.

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TWP and AHDESA, not-for-profit organisations based in the USA and Honduras, have enabled the installation of over 4000 efficient wood-burning stoves for cooking in Honduras. About half have been installed in and around the Honduran capital, Tegucigalpa, where demand for fuelwood has led to severe deforestation in the nearby hills, and also means that wood prices are high.

About 700,000 households in Honduras (90% of rural households and 50% of urban households) use fuelwood for cooking, and 90% of the wood cut down is used as fuel. Most of them cook over inefficient open wood fires, and often indoors, thus women and young children spend much of their time breathing in smoke. Although the work of TWP originally focused on decreasing fuelwood use in order to reduce deforestation, the need to prevent the damage to health from smoke has become increasingly urgent.

The 'Justa' stove which was developed in Honduras reduces both wood use and smoke. It is a substantial brick-built stove, incorporating a 'Rocket' elbow for efficient combustion and heat transfer, and a chimney to take smoke out of the kitchen. It has a hotplate which allows it to be used for several pots at a time, or for cooking tortillas. Field studies have shown that the laboratory measurement of 50% fuelwood saving is sometimes increased to 70% in practical use, because users find that they can burn agricultural residues to substitute for wood. A study of indoor air pollution is in progress, with 24-hour measurements of pollutants before and after a Justa stove is installed.

AHDESA work with poor communities to educate about the risks of smoke and deforestation, and to install stoves. Although users do not pay cash, they contribute construction materials and labour. The reduction of wood use and smoke production are immediately apparent, and there is a waiting list of communities who want stoves. TWP and AHDESA have also started a commercialisation programme to design and produce stoves for commercial sale, which will enable more rapid uptake and use in different sectors of the population.



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