Solar cookers in Madagascar can help save dwindling forests as well as power electric gadgets.
Project goal: convince residents that solar cookers are a reliable alternative
Project size size: 7,600 cookers sold since 2001
CO2 reduction: each solar cooker saves 7.2 tons of wood each year, saving around 1.3 hectares of forestland
Costs:one cooker costs the equivalent of 11 euros ($14.50)
Madagascar, once a lush, green island in the Indian Ocean, has seen vast swathes of valuable forestland disappear in recent years. The destruction stems from the growing demand for firewood - families on the island depend on it for cooking and heating. Each year, around 200,000 hectares of forestland are cut down in Madagascar. Now, a Swiss aid organization called ADES is hoping it can convince the local population to use solar cookers to cook food. ADES is hoping to wean residents off firewood and restore the island’s beautiful forests at the same time. The latest solar cooker models even offer batteries that can be hooked up via USB cable to a variety of other devices, powering everything from radios to lamps.
A film by Christian Kober