Photo: Flickr, CC
A couple weeks ago, Matt wrote a great post about why access to clean-burning and efficient cookstoves is so important, especially for people in poorer regions of Africa, Asia and South America. It might seem like a small thing, but it's actually one of the biggest problems in most of these places, right after access to clean water and sanitation, causing about 2 million premature deaths a year from indoor air pollution. Matt's post is about the United Nations Foundation, the US Government and other charities and NGOs working to raise money for the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves project, a great initiative. But it isn't the only one: The X-Prize Foundation along with the Indian Government and the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi have launched a new prize to develop clean-burning stoves that are well adapted to the people who will use them.
Photo: Flickr, CC
The Problem: "Approximately 70% of Indian households -- more than 160 million households, comprising about 770 million people - are estimated to depend on simple but polluting cookstoves that burn solid fuel, mainly wood or coal. It also is estimated that approximately 400,000 to 550,000 people - primarily women and children - die of the resulting indoor air pollution each year in the country. This makes the cookstoves problem in India and the potential market for cleaner cookstoves amongst the largest in the world. "
The Proposed Solution: "The X PRIZE Foundation, an educational non-profit that designs and administers competitions with prizes of up to $30 million, the Government of India's Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi have formed a partnership to create a global competition to develop and deploy clean and efficient cookstoves. The competition will focus on the development of affordable and clean-burning cookstove technologies (and possibly delivery models) and is a part of the MNRE's National Biomass Cookstoves Initiative, which was launched in December 2009."
When it is launched, the design competition will be part of X-Prize's Education & Global Development prize group. This group is still accepting proposals, so if you have a good idea that you want to suggest, you can do so here.
More on Air Pollution
Air-Purifying Road Surface Eats 45% of NOx Pollution
India Launches New Biomass Cookstove Program - Big Human Health & GLobal Warming Benefits
Could we Clean Up Air Pollution from Cargo Ships with... H2O?!