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close this book Boiling Point No. 27 - April 1992
View the document Women, Woodfuel, Work & Welfare
View the document Fuel Shortages & Women's Health
View the document Improved Stoves, Time, Fuel
View the document Less Fuel for Food
View the document The Value of Women's Time
View the document Women in Stoves Programmes
View the document The Effect of Fuel Efficient Stoves
View the document We Have Never Felt It So Enjoyable To Cook
View the document Stoves, Forests and Women
View the document Reflecting on Women, Children & Stoves
View the document Learning as We Teach: A Dialogue with Cooks by Caroline Ashley, Social Scientist, SHE Programme, lTDG
View the document Energy Transitions in Africa
View the document GTZ news
View the document Fuel Collection and Nutrition in Nepal
View the document Air Transfer Heat Storage Cooker
View the document Wood Energy Use in Small Enterprises
View the document NEWS
View the document About ITDG & SHE
View the document PUBLICATIONS

Women, Woodfuel, Work & Welfare

For resource - poor women the working day stretches from dawn to long after dark. The pressures on women's time are fierce, end cooking and fuel collection are among the most arduous of their tasks. The effects of inhaling biomass smoke during cooking are receiving increased attention from researchers, but the impacts of fuel shortages on cooking and nutrition are scarcely noticed.

As fuel shortages make extra demands on time and energy, women are driven to venous coping strategies. More time spent collecting fuel can mean less time growing or preparing food so that quality and quantity of food diminish. Malnourished women become more vulnerable to smoke pollution which injures their lungs, eyes, children, and unborn babies. But improved stoves can cook faster and use less fuel, which lowers levels of exposure to biomass smoke and releases time for other activities.

Our theme message is consistent and urgent: women need relief from their burden of work. Greater technology choice can help to emancipate women from drudgery and give them more control over precious resources. In some places cooking is a particularly time-consuming task, so an improved stove which cooks faster may be a source of delight. Elsewhere, fuel-management strategies by women save more fuel than carefully planned stove programmes. Stove technologists can offer choices, but decisions about household energy technologies should be in the hands of women, the real experts on cooking.

Design Heidi Lange Kikuyu Women (UNICEF)