Every year, over four million people in the world die prematurely because of the pollutants released in their houses by solid fuels burnt for heating or cooking activities. Epidemiological studies show that exposure to household air pollution (HAP) can cause, among others, acute respiratory infections, including lung cancer, tuberculosis, asthma, blindness, and potentially heart diseases and low birth weight and stillbirth.
Urgency to reduce HAP has pushed public and private institutions to support the adoption of cleaner energy sources for cooking, such as biogas, LPG, and electricity. Although LPG connections have been expanding rapidly in India, reports claim that LPG usage has not increased as much as access, especially in rural areas. A step below the LPG stove on the energy ladder is the efficient cookstove relying on biomass fuels, such as firewood and crop residues. Efficient cookstoves claim to achieve better combustion, reduce cooking time and the quantity of fuel consumed, and the emissions produced per hour of usage compared to traditional stoves.
In this study, we investigate how to promote the usage of efficient cookstoves in a setting where LPG access is rapidly expanding but remains rationed. Our study is an RCT with two treatment arms, relying on general and personalized information sessions about the impacts of household air pollution on health. The field work is in progress, and we expect it to be completed by mid 2019.
India Spend (April 2018)
Business Standard (April 2018)