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For many of us, cooking dinner is as easy as flipping a switch. But for millions of people, it can have a devastating result.
3 billion people around the world cook and heat their homes using open fires and simple stoves. In fact, it’s the biggest – and least known – killers of women and children, who spend the most time in the kitchen and at home. Over 4 million people die prematurely from an illness attributable to household air pollution caused by cooking indoors.
Can you imagine a campfire in your living room? Having to cook over an open fire is the health equivalent of smoking five packs of cigarettes a day. Carefree children often fall into open flames which result in horrific burns.
ECOLIFE installs fuel efficient stoves as an alternative to rudimentary stoves responsible for the deaths of millions. Patsari Stoves, significantly reduce the amount of smoke in the household – improving the health and quality of life for families.
What a simple stove can accomplish:
- 66% reduction in air pollution
- Cuts firewood used in half
- Saves families time by reducing the amount of time spent collecting firewood
HOW DO STOVES HELP WILDLIFE AND HABITATS?
Installing fuel efficient stoves means that 50 percent less wood is needed – means fewer trees are destroyed. ECOLIFE chooses communities to help based on the need of people and the sensitive habitats they live with.
Since 2004, ECOLIFE has built more than 1,000 permanent, ventilated, safe, fuel-efficient stoves in several communities in Central Mexico. These communities are selected based on their geographical impact on the critical butterfly reserves and surrounding forests. The monarch butterfly has been threatened with endangerment status, losing millions every year due to deforestation and the use of pesticides. The goal of this ongoing project is to build as many stoves as possible to protect the over-wintering habitat of the monarch butterfly and to improve the quality of life for the people utilizing it.
Uganda is home to the critically endangered mountain gorilla. This gentle creature status has been threatened due to habitat destruction, civil war, and poaching. Although they live in the protected Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, human activity continues to deplete their population. ECOLIFE works with communities surrounding this forest to help protect the forest home of the mountain gorilla.
WHAT IS THE STOVE PROGRAM?
This stove program is part of our overarching mission: to conserve endangered species and natural resources in order to better the lives of those who are charged with the stewardship of our natural treasures. Our work here at ECOLIFE is based on the premise that quality of life and conservation are not trade-offs—they instead go hand-in-hand. ECOLIFE implements culturally appropriate programs that result in immediate and measurable benefits to the endangered species, the human community and their natural resources.
The Mexico Community FuelWood Project and Monarch Butterflies, is a community-based conservation project that protects monarch butterfly habitats and directly improves the quality of life of communities within and surrounding Central Mexico’s Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve (MBBR). ECOLIFE builds fuel-efficient Patsari stoves to protect the forests which are the lifeblood for people and butterflies alike.
What kinds of stoves do we build?
- Permanent and built in. This allows for tracking and assessment. It also prevents the stove from tipping over, as a safety measure to prevent injury to children.
- Chimney to carry fumes out of the home. Clear smoke (without a lot of particulates) in not healthy smoke.
- Cool sides and flat tops, another safety feature with children in mind.
- Culturally appropriate based on where the family is cooking in the world. No one stove fits all – cultures eat and cook differently.
- Reduces fuel used by 50%
- Protected more than 3,000 people in Central Mexico from household burns and smoke-related respiratory ailments by installing more than 500 patsari stoves.
- Protected tens of thousands of trees from cutting as wood-for-fuel.
- Offset upwards of 8,000 metric tons of carbon emissions.
- Improved overall health of 650 Ugandan students and increased their time in classrooms.
HOW CAN YOU HELP LIGHT THEIR FIRE?
Your generous donation helps improve the quality of life for humans, wildlife and nature—and helps light their fire, safely. With just one $150 donation, you can feel good knowing that your generosity provided a community in Mexico with a safer, more fuel-efficient stove.
Did You Know?
With every $150 donation, ECOLIFE provides job opportunities for local people to build and install a highly efficient stove to a home in need and enters the family into our health and monitoring program.
“This stove does not create smoke in my house since it has a chimney, which is much better for my lungs and my family. Having this stove has made our lives much better.”Maria Isabelle