Why Aren’t More People Using Improved Cookstoves?

2023-12-20 16:38

Improved cookstoves are central to development. However, many families in the developing world elect not to use them. More advanced fuels – like propane and solar – are often more expensive than wood and animal wastes. As such, many cookstoves have a low rate of adoption, especially in poor and rural areas. If governments or international development agencies want to increase adoption rates, they might consider providing more financial assistance through improved credit access, microfinance, or subsidies. They also may want to pay greater attention to local factors such as culture and the status of women. Some cookstoves do not allow users to cook culturally significant food and in many parts of the developing world, women have little bargaining power in household decision making.

Clean cooking initiatives offer a creative solution to addressing many targets found in the United Nation’s new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Goal 7 (SDG7) seeks to provide affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy to all. Cookstoves offer a way to improve global access to modern energy, while addressing other goals like SDG3 (ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all ages).

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