Over 70% of house­holds use fire­wood

Daily Trust - - ENVIRONMENT - By Alex Abutu

More than 70 per cent of the 36 mil­lion house­holds in the coun­try rely on fire­wood for their cook­ing and other forms of do­mes­tic en­ergy.

This was the view ex­pressed by Ms Pre­cious Onu­vae, Mar­ket De­vel­op­ment Man­ager at the Nige­rian Al­liance for Clean Cookstoves at the open­ing of boost pro­gramme that de­vel­ops the ca­pac­ity of so­cial en­ter­prises to un­der­take bank­able projects.

Onu­vae said that the fire­wood op­tion was cheap for most house­holds but that it had se­ri­ous health im­pli­ca­tions on the long run.

She called for a switch to a bet­ter and cleaner op­tion which in­cludes the clean cook­stove and LPG say­ing that it would save so­ci­ety in terms of health, the en­vi­ron­ment and eco­nomic costs.

Also speak­ing at the boost pro­gramme, Anan­than Kr­ish­nan, Se­nior As­so­ciate at In­ter­na­tional Cen­tre for En­ergy, En­vi­ron­ment and De­vel­op­ment, ICEED, said that more than 2.9 bil­lion peo­ple glob­ally still re­lied on fire­wood, coal and other pol­lut­ing fu­els to cook and heat their homes.

“Th­ese num­bers un­der­line the ur­gent need to ac­cel­er­ate the adop­tion of clean, ef­fi­cient cook­ing fu­els which can save mil­lions of lives and help reach sus­tain­able en­ergy goals by 2030,” Kr­ish­nan said.

But as the dis­cus­sion on the neg­a­tive im­pact of fire­wood con­tin­ues in the board­room, the busi­ness of sell­ing fire­wood con­tin­ues to boom across the coun­try.

The users of fire­wood in Abuja had grown from house­holds, food ven­dors to bak­eries, schools and eater­ies.

Madam Chioma Em­manuel, a trader in Kubwa, a sub­urb of Bwari Area Coun­cil in the Fed­eral Cap­i­tal Ter­ri­tory (FCT), said she gets her fire­wood from Gwagwa, adding that the busi­ness is not as lu­cra­tive as it was be­fore.

She said that the busi­ness has been the means of liveli­hood for her fam­ily since the death of her hus­band. “The lit­tle money I make from sell­ing fire­wood is what I’m us­ing to train my chil­dren in school,” she adds.

Ac­cord­ing to

her,

felling of trees was bad, but there was noth­ing she could do, as that has been what has been sus­tain­ing her and her chil­dren.

A 55-year-old woman, Ma­man Habib, who sells fire­wood at Kado, Life Camp said: “We re­ally suf­fer es­pe­cially dur­ing rainy sea­son but we are still able to keep life go­ing.”

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