Darfur, one of the poorest regions in Sudan, has been in the midst of a complicated and bloody conflict since 2003 that has resulted in the displacement of 2.2 million citizens. The displaced, known as Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), are crowded into refugee camps scattered across the region with low fuelwood productivity and no alternative means of fuel. Unsustainable harvesting has led to increasing zones of total denudation around the camps, now extending several kilometers in all directions from the camp boundaries. Women who leave the camp to fetch fuelwood are subject to rape and mutilation due to the continuing conflict.
In November of 2005, a team of scientists from LBNL visited Darfur to assess the potential of fuel-efficient stoves (“FES”) as a means to mitigate the fuelwood shortage. In addition to conducting a systematic informal survey, the team found that a metal FES, known as the Tara, required 50% less fuelwood to cook an IDP meal than the inefficient three-stone-fire used by 90% of the IDPs. The LBNL team emerged from the trip recommending a metal FES based on the Tara, but with two specific design modifications to make it suitable for conditions in Darfur. These included improving the mechanical stability of the stove during vigorous stirring, and maintaining or improving performance during a breeze.
Amrose, S., Kisch, G. T., Kirubi, C., Woo, J., Gadgil, A. (2008). LBNL report: LBNL-116E.
The article can be accessed here: LBNL116E_DevTestBDS_2008