It turns out that the issue of clean cookstoves in the developing world brings up more concerns than just the environmental impact. Along with the environment, clean cookstove innovation has major effects on health, economic livelihood, and gender equality. This means that clean cooking innovation has the potential to greatly improve the lives and futures of the three billion people that currently use open fires to cook food for their families. Advancement in technology allows for cleaner fuels to be used more efficiently, saving families money on fuel costs, emitting less smoke into the environment and improving respiratory health of the women using it. Adoption of the latest technology relies on creative marketing sensitive to the lives and behaviors of those who could benefit from cleaner cookstoves. The companies and organizations at SOCAP13’s Innovation Showcase work to make sure that three billion people live longer, save money, and take care of their families. They’re applying innovation to clean cooking in three areas: hardware, fuel, and marketing.
EzyLife: Improving the burn-rate of readily-available fuel resources
BURN Manufacturing: One-stop shop for user-centered research, design and manufacturing.
Inyenyeri: Makes a much cleaner burning biofuel, giving away the stoves for free as incentive to use this cleaner-burning fuel.
SMEFUNDS: Makes a biofuel gel that doesn’t emit carbon into the atmosphere.
Grameen: Using marketing to appeal to the public through aspiration rather than education.
Envirofit: Using 2 for 1 cellphone plus cookstove to entice the men with purchasing power to get the stove for their home.
By SOCAP13 Volunteer Sydney Malawer