Energy efficient presents for women on the roof of the world

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Янв 18 2018

The early 2018 has brought a pleasant surprise to 20 women from Yapshorv and Barchadiv villages of the Bartang valley in GBAO (Gorno-Badahshan Autonomous Region). Being participants of the Project "Clean Energy: Sustainable Communities" implemented by the Little Earth with support from the Democracy Commission Small Grants Program they received free sets of energy efficient equipment.

"Santa Claus was a little late - after all, Bartang is a remote area. However, the most important thing is that the equipment was delivered intact and proved very helpful in household chores" - jokes Anton Timoshenko, executive director of the Little Earth.

Each set comprised a parabolic solar cooker, an energy efficient stove for cooking and a portable lantern with a solar panel which can be optionally used to charge mobile devices. The equipment was distributed on January 9, 2018 with assistance from staff and activists of the local non-governmental organization "Oyandasoz" (partner of the Little Earth in the Bartang valley).

All donated devices are affordable, reliable and easy to operate. Their use will help to reduce fuel consumption, family expenditures, deleterious gas emissions, improve sanitation and safety and ease pressure on scanty natural resources. For example, the solar cookers represent a parabolic structure inlaid with reflecting material. Their owners do not need any special technical skills to be able to operate them. This being said, solar cookers can help families to reduce their consumption of firewood on sunny days.

The energy saving stove for cooking presented to the women may help reduce consumption of firewood up to 65%. Food is cooked twice as fast when one is using such stoves. They also reduce emission of toxic gases up to 80% (as compared to open "three-stone" fireplaces). According to the manufacturer, operational life of such stoves is about five years.

The solar portable lanterns are fitted with a LED lamp and a small detachable/connectable solar panel to recharge a built-in battery. The lantern has a support and can operate in three lighting modes. It can be used both as a desk lamp and as a portable flashlight. The lantern case has two USB ports to recharge cell phones and other gadgets.

"The portable solar lanterns have become the women's best aids. The project participants who received those devices use them both inside and outside their houses. They take the lanterns with them whenever they go out on a visit during dark hours, when they herd the livestock back into their barns in the evening or when they come back home with collected firewood" - says Rozik Yaftaliev, head of the NGO "Oyandasoz".

The solar cookers and energy efficient stoves for cooking are waiting their turn. It is too cold now in the highland areas and the weather prevents active utilization of this equipment outdoors. When the warm season arrives, the women will be using the devices much more often in doing their household chores. Both the solar parabolic cookers and rocket-type stoves have proven their reliability and effectiveness under past projects implemented by the Little Earth.

It should be recalled that many communities in the upper reaches of the Bartang valley still have no access to power supply. Families here are highly dependent on tree and shrubbery vegetation for firewood as well as dried animal dung for cooking and heating. The destruction of vegetation causes increased land degradation, deterioration of pasture lands and more frequent natural disasters. The Little Earth has been working for many years promoting introduction of sustainable energy solutions at the community level.

Timur Idrisov, Environmental organization "The Little Earth"