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Here is an illustration of a company that is working to solve one of the world’s most important problems: indoor air pollution. Estimates place diseases due to indoor air pollution (mostly caused by cooking over open fires indoors) as the killer of over 1.5 million people per year. That makes indoor air pollution the 8th deadliest killer on the planet. For comparison, even these guys report that climate change “kills” 150,000 people yearly. The IPCC mortality estimates of future climate change are nowhere near that high.

In any case, Envirofit has sold over a quarter-million stoves that burn fuel more efficiently and require less fuel – meaning that the world’s poorest people now have more time and money to do other things, and their health will dramatically improve, creating a virtuous cycle of development.

5 Responses to “Doing Good While Doing Well, A Continuing Series”

  1. Rod says:

    The map depicting deaths due to climate change curiously coincides with a map one could devise to show deaths due to collectivism.

    The world over, life spans are most seriously affected by poverty and hunger, two things that track closely with authoritarian socialism. The best way to address world hunger would be to spread capitalism to the third world countries.

    I won’t even get started on the “give a man a fish” school of philosophy. I have to check out the tuna trip schedule for the Big Jamaica.

  2. Rod says:

    Barack Obama should send one of those stoves to his brother in Kenya. It would make his brother’s mud hut a lot safer.

    Still, any stove would have a carbon footprint at least as big as the launch the Royal Family takes to their yacht. (Prince William, just like his father, Alfred E. Neumann, is concerned with global warming).

  3. Harry says:

    I noticed Rod’s comments, but I had a Werber grill before he did.

    I assume your post alludes to the problem of sub-Saharan people burning charcoal inside their dwellings without a chimney to vent the carbon monoxide and the much more pernicious carbon dioxide.

    Now, I think it wise not to build a cooking fire, even with Kingsford, inside your hut, lest you be killed from carbon monoxide. Same princiiple applies to not running your Escalade in the garage without opening the door.

    However, the next dollar of foreign aid should go for one of those cookers, or a Weber kettle, as long as you do not keep it in the hut.

    This would beat by a long shot the IMF shipping a billion to Nigeria for shovel-ready jobs.

  4. chuck martel says:

    Think about it for a minute. . . nobody cooks indoors if it’s hot. If it’s hot, they cook outside. So cooking indoors has the secondary (or maybe even primary) characteristic of warming up the place. And, no matter how nifty the stove might be, it’s going to produce CO, a poisonous by-product of combustion. Of course, the huts that these folks live in are probably pretty well ventilated so they’re unlikely to succumb but spending an evening sucking in CO can’t be very good for you. Probably a lot like chain-smoking Lucky Strikes. The thing is, the stove can be more efficient and useful than an open fire and that’s OK. As soon as somebody gets one, the neighbors will make their own if they think that they’re worth the trouble.

  5. chuck martel says:

    By the way, use of an item like one of these stoves is probably illegal in every jurisdiction in the US. The primitives could make a stove out of a five gallon can and some scrap tin that would include a stove pipe that would solve the indoor air pollution problem.

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