Image credit: Trees Water People
Jeff has already reported how solar panels are supporting relief efforts in Haiti, and April has covered the use of biochar stoves to help Haitians too. (Though some commenters remained unconvinced.) Now another piece of appropriate technology is being deployed in this nation where many people are still struggling to meet their basic needs. And this one is about as simple as it gets—rocket stoves.
From building your own rocket stove to non-profit efforts to optimize rocket stove designs, the concept is not new. Essentially, a rocket stove is a low-tech wood burning stove that uses simple principles like optimized air flow to the fire, complete combustion of volatile compunds that often escape as smoke on an open fire, and the efficient use of the heat that is given off. They can usually use small twigs, bits of waste wood and other small fuels that can be scavenged, rather than rely on chopping down trees for firewood. And because they are easily controlled, they also encourage users to burn just the right amount of wood that they need.
The Coloradoan reports on a charity that is bringing these efficient cook stoves to aid disaster relief in Haiti, and slow deforestation in the process:
"Since the quake, Trees, Water & People has sent 430 stoves as part of an emergency aid effort. The energy-efficient, low-cost cookstoves can be used by displaced people to boil contaminated water and cook beans and rice. The organization also raised $28,000 for medical and emergency relief in Haiti."
The stoves are produced by Stove Tec of Oregon, and Trees Water People are asking for just $20 to provide a stove to a family that needs it. The donation covers purchase of the stove, transportation, warehousing, as well as distribution to families, and tracking its use.