Scientists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) are known for designing high-efficiency cookstoves for Darfur and Ethiopia. Now they are applying their expertise to the windswept steppes of Mongolia, whose capital city, Ulaan Baatar, is among the most polluted cities in the world. The scientists are working with the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), a U.S. foreign aid agency, to improve air quality in the capital city by lowering emissions from outdated stoves and boilers.
To broaden and accelerate its efforts at poverty alleviation Berkeley Lab announces the launch of the LBNL Institute for Globally Transformative Technologies (LIGTT, pronounced “light”). Its ambitious mandate is to foster the discovery, development, and deployment of a generation of technologies that will advance sustainable methods to fight global poverty.
Scientists from Berkeley Lab have teamed up with students from the University of California (UC), Berkeley to run a series of efficiency tests comparing the traditional Haiti cookstove with a variety of low-cost, commercially available alternatives. The long-term goal is to find the safest and most fuel-efficient stove—or to design a new one that would win favor with the cooks of Haiti—and tap the resources of nonprofit aid organizations to subsidize its manufacture in local metal shops.
What does the European Climate Exchange in London have to do with the rural Yaya Gulelle district in Ethiopia? Everything—if all goes well in some test chambers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory this summer. Berkeley Lab researchers, led by senior scientist Ashok Gadgil, have already designed an efficient cookstove specifically for women living in makeshift camps for displaced persons in Darfur. Now, the non-profit World Vision has approached Berkeley Lab to modify its Darfur stove for Ethiopia.
Designed in Berkeley, California, manufactured in Mumbai, India and assembled in Darfur, Sudan, the Berkeley-Darfur Stove will soon be distributed to thousands of displaced families to cook meals in way that is both fuel-efficient and safe for women. Because the stove uses up to four times less wood than the traditional three-stone stoves common in Darfur, women, who often walk for hours to collect firewood, will have far less exposure to violence.