The use of solar cookers in countries where the sun is abundant but the economy is poor can help to protect natural resources. In most cases the extraction of wood is excessive and uncontrolled, damaging the habitat available for people, animals and plants. The consequences of deforestation are well known: erosion, displacement of people. climate change... The basis of life disappears.
Up to 90% of the energy needs in poorer countries is covered by wood, primarily for the preparation of food. This makes the solar cookers a simple and accessible alternative with great effect in the fight against deforestation. As the resources becomes scarcer the demand for solar cookers and related technologies increases.
It is not easy but it is nonetheless necessary to provide the solar cookers and corresponding parts for a pilot stage when introduce people to this technology. The materials have to be assembled under experienced guidance and the buyers need to be instructed on how to use the cookers. It is also our goal to have the solar cookers produced with local materials by local artisans, in order to support the creation of workplaces.
When evaluating this technology, UNICEF estimated that one third of the worldwide firewood consumption (350 million Tonnes per year) could be saved by using solar cookers. Since fuels such as firewood or coal are quite expensive, the investment in a solar cooker can be recovered in a short period, creating a financial incentive and a concrete way to improve the living standards. However, even though projects with solar cookers can be economically self-sustaining, it is still necessary to provide some support to reach the poorest sections of the population. On the one hand, setting up workshops and buying the materials requires startup capital. On the other hand, the manufacture of solar cookers is relatively simple but has small profit margins. Since this is not an appealing model for normal businesses, it becomes hard to establish production centres and grow them into an industrial activity. The developed world must therefore play a part in nurturing these technologies, with the NGOs having an important role in this process.