Monday, February 13, 2012

Women Engineers Promote Low-Carbon Cooking Across Mali


Check out this article about my friend & colleague in Mali ~ Anna & I worked together on a solar cooking evaluation at a refugee camp in Chad ~ what an inspiration!


 Engineer Anna Dembele works with a solar cooker and thermal heating basket in the compound of her home, where she teaches other women to make and use the cookers. ALERTNET/Soumaila T. Diarra


By Soumaila T. Diarra

BAMAKO, Mali (AlertNet) – Engineer Anna Dembele’s smile broadens as she shows off the low-carbon cooking kits she makes. The association she belongs to now plans to promote use of the equipment across Mali, helping people cope with inflation and tackling deforestation in the bargain.
A 2010 report from Mali’s agriculture ministry said that more than 500,000 hectares of forest are cleared for firewood and charcoal each year in the West African country. But new ways of cooking, using solar power and heat retention, could cut those losses.
Dembele demonstrates the kit on the paved floor of her compound. There’s a basic solar cooker, which consists of a box lined with reflective foil, a metal pot and a heat-resistant plastic bag. There is also an insulated “thermos” basket in which food is put to continue simmering after being heated to boiling point, and a “rocket” stove, which supplements the solar cooker and enables more efficient use of firewood.


Read more on AlertNet.

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