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Improved Cookstoves, India

Efficient cookstoves bring improved health and financial security to 600,000 households in India

Project overview

  • Region: Asia

  • Project type: Household devices

  • Standards: Gold Standard

India uses the greatest amount of fuel wood of any country in the world. This means that over 900 million people are exposed to indoor air pollution on a daily basis, and it is estimated that consequently 360,000 people die prematurely each year. This Gold Standard project is enabling households to significantly reduce health risks and fuel costs through the distribution of more efficient biomass cookstoves. Additionally, the manufacturing, sales and distribution of the stoves has increased employment, with subsidies available to help households who are unable to afford the upfront costs.

Sustainable Development Goals

In addition to delivering emissions reductions to help take urgent action to combat climate change (SDG 13), the project delivers a number of other sustainable development benefits. These include: 

  • Good Health and Well-being: The efficient cookstoves facilitate an 80% reduction in smoke within the household, significantly reducing exposure to harmful indoor air pollution.
  • No Poverty: Simple design enhancements make the stoves 60% more fuel-efficient. Reduced fuel use equates to a monthly saving of approximately US $7 (INR 450), which is around 7% of the average household monthly income. 
  • Life on Land: As 82% of households depend on wood for cooking, this project eases the burden of overuse on forests, and subsequently decreases deforestation.

Read More information to find out how the project delivers other sustainable development benefits.

  • Gender Equality: Leaving the home to collect fuel is physically exerting and exposes women to insect bites and possible attacks. The insulated design of the stove also delivers a 50% reduction in the time needed for cooking, which can be allocated to other tasks.
  • Decent Work and Economic Growth: The manufacturing, sales and distribution of the stoves has created 120 jobs.

Household air pollution is a serious health concern in India, attributable to around 5% of the national burden of disease risk.

The project has placed emphasis on educating the public about stove benefits through community gatherings, street plays, van and doorstep campaigns, and distributing information pamphlets.

Approximately 40% of the efficient cookstoves sales through the project have been made possible through microcredit. Microfinance institutions typically agree loans for 75% of the cost of the cookstoves that are paid back over 4 to 8 months.

Manjula’s Story

We purchased Envirofit cookstove a year ago. Before that our house was a mess with smoke, soot, and pollution due to our old traditional stove. The walls of the house were in bad shape and we were ashamed of our own house. Those days are gone now that we have our Envirofit smokeless cookstove which promises less carbon, soot and a clean, fresh house.