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The Potential of Efficient Improved Mud-Brick Cookstove in Cameroon: An Exploratory Study

Publication date:
F. H. Abanda, M.B. Manjia, E. Cole, B. Mempouo
Cross-sectoral enabler:

In most Africa countries, cooking is a dirty and time-consuming job that involves feeding some pieces of fuel such as wood, charcoal, or coal for a fire. Globally, some 500 million households with more than 70% in Africa depend on burning solid fuel to meet their cooking, heating, lighting, and other household energy needs. The wanton exploitation of wood fuel is having so many negative impacts on many households in Cameroon. Some of the impacts include the depletion of the forest leading to environmental degradation, health impacts, etc. In the Central Africa region including Cameroon about 80-90% of the population has limited access to modern forms of energy such as electricity, and relies on traditional biomass (e.g. wood and agricultural residues) for cooking and heating. There is an urgent need to investigate more efficient cookstove technologies that have very minimal or no impact on the environment and households. In this study, an improved mud-brick cook stove was designed and tested in a typical family house in Cameroon. To ensure the acceptability and sustainability of the technology, the rural dwellers were involved in the design and implementation. The performance of the stove was compared with that of traditional 3-stone fireside common in most rural households in Cameroon. The mud-brick cook stoves are large and permanently built into a kitchen and easy to use. The mud-brick cook stove construction materials are available in communities that have clay soil and can be made using limited tools.