For many people on this earth, a renewable fuel is near to hand and may even currently be superfluous: according to the technical agency for renewable raw materials in Germany (FNR), one third of the annual wood growth in Germany goes unused. And as a renewable raw material, the CO2 emissions of wood burning are balanced by the uptake of CO2 in the growth of restocked trees. Of course, wood burning kitchen stoves are not a new idea. Long before anyone was concerned about CO2 emissions, the smoke and smell of wood burning in contrast to the shiny cleanliness of the modern electrical technology led to the decline of wood stoves. Today, with our enlightened selection of technology, the wood stove is still rarely welcome in the modern kitchen. And where still in use for home heating or cooking, wood burning is a disproportionate contributor to deterioration of air quality: in the own home or for the entire neighborhood in dense populations. In recent years, the development of more efficient stoves for home heating has made great progress (see Treehugger's report on the EPA changout campaign). The Glutos stove, developed with support of the FNR and the German consumer protection agency, hopes to return renewable fuel to the kitchen. And as a bonus: the pleasure and comfort of beautiful flickering flames under the evening cookpot and an alternative for those looking to further their independence from swinging energy costs and the depletion of non-renewable resources.
The Glutos has been designed to promote an efficient burning, with very low emissions of particulates (smoke), carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons. Of special note: The Glutos stove can also be outfitted for use in modern or high-efficiency house architecture where the air-exchange rates are very low. The stove is available with or without the IR-radiation retaining view glass and with either a steel or ceremic cooking top. It can be built-in or stand alone and is available in the traditional white and brown enamel or stainless steel finish. At between 560 and 913€, depending on size and options, the stoves are competitive with mid-priced electrical stoves. Unfortunately, the Glutos website is only in German. But I am certain some of our readers have good tips on similar technologies in their neighborhoods: let us know in the comments!