News / Health

World Bank Urges Cleaner Stoves to Save Lives, Fight Global Warming

FILE - Fuel-efficient stoves use significantly less firewood than a traditional three-stone stove. This woman in Burma is using a pipe to help increase the fire's flames to cook the food.
FILE - Fuel-efficient stoves use significantly less firewood than a traditional three-stone stove. This woman in Burma is using a pipe to help increase the fire's flames to cook the food.
Reuters
Simple measures to reduce pollution from cooking stoves in developing nations could save a million lives a year and help slow global warming, a World Bank study showed on Monday.
 
Tighter restrictions on diesel emissions, for instance from car exhausts, could also avert 340,000 premature deaths annually by reining in soot and other heat-trapping pollutants that are also stoking climate change, the report claimed.
 
The study called for tough limits on pollution from methane and soot, which can settle on snow and ice and hasten a thaw by darkening its surface, in everything from cooking and heating to mining and flaring by the oil and gas industry.
 
“The damage from indoor cooking smoke alone is horrendous - every year, four million people die from exposure to the smoke,” World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said in a statement of the study “On Thin Ice: How Cutting Pollution can Slow Warming and Save Lives”.
 
Many people in developing nations cook on open fires with wood or coal, exposing people - mainly women and children - to fumes that cause everything from respiratory problems to heart disease.
 
“If more clean cook-stoves - stoves that use less or cleaner fuel - would be used it could save one million lives,” the report said.
      
Permafrost
 
Mass produced, such stoves can cost a few dollars each.
 
Monday's study was co-written by the International Cryosphere Climate Initiative - the cryosphere is the world's ice, snow and permafrost, from Siberia to Antarctica.
 
New stoves use fans to improve combustion, or less-polluting fuels such as gas from crop waste or manure.
 
“If we act fast and cut common pollutants like soot and methane we can slow the rate of warming... and if we did so we can save millions of lives,” Rachel Kyte, World Bank vice president for sustainable development, told a telephone news conference.
 
Tighter controls on pollution could also boost crop growth, the report said. Plant growth can be hampered by a haze of pollution.
 
A 2011 U.N. study estimated that measures to limit air pollutants such as methane and soot could slow the pace of global warming by 0.5 degrees Celsius (0.9 Fahrenheit) by mid-century.
 
A study in August 2013, however, said the benefits would be far less. Temperatures have risen by about 0.8 C (1.4 F) compared to before the Industrial Revolution.
 
Almost 200 nations will meet in Warsaw from Nov. 11-22 to consider ways to combat global warming. They have agreed to work out by the end of 2015 a deal that will enter into force from 2020.

You May Like

Bernie Sanders Surge Reflects US Shift on Socialism

Although most analysts say it is unlikely he will get the Democratic nomination, Sanders' campaign opens up questions and issues that are otherwise marginalized More

Crowdfunding Helps Save Neil Armstrong's Spacesuit

Smithsonian turns to Kickstarter to raise more than $700,000 to help preserve the spacesuit worn by the first man to walk on the moon More

Video On IS Frontline, Kurdish Fighters Ready for Offensive

Peshmerga soldiers say although they need more heavy artillery, they are poised to take the fight to the Islamic State extremists on their turf More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Frank
November 04, 2013 1:28 PM
Yeah - damn those poor people who don't have access to affordable electricity or gas to cook or warm themselves with, burning wood is killing the planet, I knew it would be the poor third worlders all along. Please, stop disguising this claptrap as 'combating global warming' the answer to the health hazards of living with an open fire is not to give them 'more efficient' open fires; just give them cheap electricity and/or gas and instead of saving 1 million lives from smoke exposure you'd save 4 million. Or do you really not want to save them after all, do you just want to appear to be helping them?

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outragei
X
Henry Ridgwell
September 04, 2015 11:36 AM
The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Drowned Migrant Toddler Photo Triggers European Outrage

The harrowing picture of a drowned three-year-old Syrian boy washed up on a Turkish beach appears to have galvanized Europe’s leaders into doing more to address the refugee crisis. France, Germany and Italy issued a joint call Thursday for compulsory quotas of refugees for all EU states. But there were chaotic scenes in Hungary as police tried to force migrants off a train heading for Austria. Henry Ridgwell has more. And a caution, some of the images in this report may be disturbing.
Video

Video Russians Observe 11th Anniversary of Beslan School Attack

This week, Russians have been observing the 11th anniversary of the attack by Islamic militants on a school in Russia's North Caucasus region that killed more than 330 hostages, including 186 children. The three-day siege and massacre that started on September 1, 2004 took place in Beslan, a town in the republic of North Ossetia, and is one of the bloodiest terrorist acts ever in Russia. VOA's Mike Richman reports.
Video

Video Native Americans Debate: Father Serra, Saint or Sinner?

Pope Francis will canonize an 18th century missionary to Spanish California during a papal visit to the United States this month.  But some Native Americans have criticized the elevation to sainthood of the missionary priest, Junipero Serra. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Calais School Offers Another Face of Europe’s Migrant Crisis

Europe is facing mounting criticism over how it’s handling its biggest migration crisis since World War II. But not all Europeans believe building walls or passing repressive policies are the answer. A school for migrants in the French port city of Calais, is opening doors and building bonds across nationalities. VOA's Lisa Bryant reports.
Video

Video Kurdish Fighters on IS Frontline Ready for Offensive

Finger on the trigger, the Kurdish Peshmerga soldier stared across the dust at a village taken over by Islamic State extremists. The Kurdistan’s Khazir frontline, just 45 minutes from the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul. And at this point, the militants were less than two kilometers away. VOA's Sharon Behn reports.
Video

Video China Announces Troop Cuts at WWII Parade

Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday announced plans to cut the world’s largest military force by 300,000 troops. The announcement was made during a massive military parade to commemorate victory over Japan in World War II. The event was shunned by most Western leaders and for some is raising fresh concerns about China’s military ambitions. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Russia-Japan Relations Cool as Putin Visits China for WWII Anniversary

Russian President Vladimir Putin is in Beijing for commemorations of the 70th anniversary of China's WWII victory over Japan. Putin is expected to visit Japan later this year, but tensions between Tokyo and Moscow over islands disputed since the war, and sanctions over Ukraine, could pour cold water on the plan. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Yemen ‘on Brink of Disaster’ as Medical Shortages Soar

Aid agencies warn Yemen is on the brink of humanitarian disaster – with up to half a million children facing severe malnutrition, and hospitals running out of basic medicines. There are fears Yemen's civil war could escalate as the coalition led by Saudi Arabia tries to drive back Houthi rebels, who seized control of much of the country earlier this year. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Apps Helping Kenyan Businesses Stay Ahead of Counterfeiters

Counterfeit goods in Kenya cost the government as much as $1 billion each year in lost tax revenues. The fake goods also hurt entrepreneurs who find it hard to carve out a niche in the market and retain customers. But as Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi, information technology is being used to try to beat the problem.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.

VOA Blogs