Solar cooker project, China
About the project
'Globally 1.9 million lives are lost each year due to toxic smoke from indoor fires
- making it the fifth worst threat to public health in the developing world - with
women and young children most at risk. '
The solar cooker project is the distribution of solar cookers to local Tibetan villages
in the Qinghai Province of China. The project is a partnership with local Tibetan
organisation Pentok Institute who have distributed of 330 and 408 solar cookers
in July 2009 and July 2011 respectively. Solar cookers work on the principle of
converting sunlight into heat energy to cook food or boil water for purification.
The surface of the cooker contains hundreds of small mirrors that reflect the heat
towards a dark pot positioned above the cooker. A solar cooker can boil water in
15 minutes. The purpose of solar cookers is to reduce the use of traditional stoves,
which require the use of wood and animal dung for fuel. The reduction in use of
traditional stoves increases fuel security in regions where fuel is scarce and reduces
the exposure to smoke, which can lead to chronic respiratory diseases.
"It is great to have solar cooker in my family, I really appreciate this. I have
been busy and suffered for my entire life going out collecting dung, cooking and
fetching water. Now with solar cooker, I don’t think I will need to keep two girls
at home to help me with the chores."
Chotso, solar cooker recipient
The short-term aims of the project
- To reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the burning of animal dung and un-sustainably
- To protect the local environment, which is experiencing deforestation from the
collection of wood for fuel.
- To reduce the danger of home fires.
- To reduce the time that children and the elderly have to spend in search of dung
and firewood for fuel
- To reduce smoke inhalation
- To reduce the time spent cooking (as food can be placed in a pot and left while
other chores are completed).
The medium-term aims of the project include
- School-age children who are kept at home to help with chores and collection of
firewood can return to school.
- Improvement in health of women and children due to reduced smoke inhalation.
- Improvement in the local environment.
"I am a representative of my village, I say thanks to you again… Your donation is
just like a spring rain that makes our life lively and hopeful. We will pray for
you and wish success will be with you forever. All best wishes and hope all your
dreams come true."
Palchong (Mehkou village leader)