Since unveiling the first line of clean cookstoves in May 2008, Envirofit, Envirofit International, a technology leader using sustainable, scalable business models to solve global health and environmental problems, has sold over 100,000 cookstoves in emerging markets around the world, with India as their primary focus to date.

According to World Health Organization, nearly half the world's population - nearly 3 billion people - cook their daily meals indoors using traditional fire and stoves, burning biomass fuels like wood and crop waste. These traditional cooking methods are inefficient, waste fuel and are deadly, converting the burning biomass into toxic substances. The resulting Indoor Air Pollution (IAP) kills 1.6 million people every year, more than 85 percent of which are women and children under five. In addition, recent research has revealed that the soot from developing world cooking fires is second only to CO2 in affecting global warming. As such, government agencies and global leaders have been promoting improved cookstoves as a potential stop-gap solution to slow global warming effects. (Envirofit)

The 100,000+ cookstoves sold to date have conserved over 50,000 tons of wood from being burned and kept over 100,000 tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere. Vast improvements in cooking efficiency have yielded dramatic reductions in fuel cost and time savings for households with Envirofit stoves.

Over the next five years, these stoves could keep over 140,000 kg of black carbon from entering the atmosphere. With recent research pointing to Black Carbon as the second greatest contributor to global warming, Envirofit cookstoves represent a sustainable, scalable global warming mitigation strategy.

Read more about Envirofit's work here

Small Energy-Saving Steps Can Make Big Strides

By Jeffrey Ball
An extract from the Wall Street Journal - 27 November 2010

For years, the fight to curb fossil-fuel consumption has often involved moon shots. But many of those efforts - such as cars powered by methanol, natural gas or hydrogen — haven't exactly taken off. The smarter strategy for reducing energy consumption and pollution more broadly would be decidedly low-tech solutions, a growing number of experts say.

Low-tech steps themselves won't suffice, many scientists and policy makers say. They recommend slashing greenhouse-gas emissions 50% or more by the middle of the century, and that won't likely happen without sophisticated technologies like burying carbon-dioxide emissions underground, nuclear energy, and wind and solar power.

But big improvements from those costly technologies may be years away. Today, there are measures available for both the industrialized West and the developing world that may seem more evolutionary than revolutionary. But these unglamorous options could add up to major environmental progress — and at a cost more palatable in struggling economies, scientists say.

Consider the basic cook stove — a low-cost option that can dramatically reduce pollution.

More than half the world's population burns fuel indoors to cook and heat their homes, according to the World Health Organization. Those indoor fires emit small particles that can get lodged in the lungs and that account for 1.5 million deaths annually, says the organization, which calls the fires "the killer in the kitchen." The fires also contribute to a smoggy plume known as the Atmospheric Brown Cloud. Studies, including some from Stanford University, say the cloud is trapping heat in the atmosphere.

Several companies and nonprofit groups are trying to sell large numbers of low-cost stoves, particularly in India. The stoves look like pasta pots. Because of their design, they cook a meal with less wood, which they burn more cleanly. So the stoves can slash emissions of pollutants by more than half, manufacturers say.

A paper earlier this year co-authored by Mr. Victor, the California energy expert, estimated that if half the families in India began using improved stoves, the Atmospheric Brown Cloud would shrink by about one-third.

Envirofit International, a Fort Collins, Colo., nonprofit group, has sold some 100,000 stoves over the past year in southern India. The organization sells them largely out of vans that roll along dirt roads in rural villages. One study notes that 60 million stoves, if sold in India for only $5 each, would cost $300 million. Even if the stoves cost more, that rollout would be cheaper than most other clean-energy options.

"The energy problem," says Steven Chu, the U.S. energy secretary, "can be advanced a long way by pretty low-tech stuff."

Read the article in full here