Women worst affected by household air pollution

The World Health Organisation states that approximately three billion people cook using polluting open fires or stoves fueled by kerosene, biomass (wood, animal dung and crop waste) and coal. Further, each year, close to four million people die prematurely from illnesses attributable to household air pollution from inefficient cooking practices using polluting cooking stoves.

Women are vastly overburdened with exposure to household air pollution from polluting and unhealthy home energy sources. Clean cooking solutions have greatly reduced the burden women and girls face among them back aches, loss of economic opportunities, spinal injuries, lung related diseases and eye sight problems. However, while offering clean cooking solutions contribute to achieving some of the SDGs , a new report by Hivos and World Future Council Beyond Fire: How to achieve electric cooking states that these solutions are only good in the interim but are “neither a truly long term nor a truly sustainable solution to the challenge of cooking”.

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