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Energy saving technology

The Upesi stove

Many Kenyan families are now cooking on an Upesi stove instead of a three-stone fire. In their own Kiswahili language, 'Upesi' means 'quick' - the stove is much more efficient than traditional cooking methods and saves a lot of time.

As you can see, it is cylindrical, enclosed and moulded in clay. Although fuels like maize husks, cane stalks and dried animal dung can be used, the Kenyan women still usually burn wood to heat the stove. However, they need much less wood, as one woman explained: 'Now I use one bundle of wood in the time I used to need two.' As a result, they spend less time each day collecting wood.

The stove is built into a mud base that insulates it so that less heat is lost. This also makes it more stable, reducing the risk of scalds and burns. And because the stove produces much less smoke than a traditional fire, families suffer fewer smoke-related illnesses.

Stop and think:
"Living in a house with a three-stone fire is the equivalent of smoking 200 cigarettes per day. Make a list of the health problems a family might suffer as a result of this."

"Household tasks should be shared equally between men and women."

The Anagi energy-saving stove

A day in the life of an Upesi user

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Practical Action - Technology challenging povertyEuropean Commission - Department for International Development

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