Sweet nectar of the Gaia: lessons from Ethiopia's

Rogers, Christopher, Sovacool, Benjamin K and Clarke, Shannon (2013) Sweet nectar of the Gaia: lessons from Ethiopia's. Energy for Sustainable Development, 17 (3). pp. 245-251. ISSN 0973-0826

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Though initiated only at smaller scales so far, “Project Gaia” offers an innovative Ethiopian model for using byproducts from the sugar industry to create an ethanol fuel that can be utilized by cleaner burning cookstoves, predominately internally displaced refugees. Backed by the Shell Foundation and a collection of NGOs, Project Gaia has distributed almost 4000 ethanol combusting stoves throughout refugee camps in Ethiopia. After summarizing the research methods utilized by the authors and introducing readers to the energy situation in Ethiopia, this study describes the history, benefits, and challenges of Project Gaia. Though the number of distributed stoves is small, they have lessened the burden of collecting fuelwood for Ethiopian refugees, reduced deforestation around refugee camps, displaced greenhouse gas emissions, and improved the health of cooks and children—all for roughly one-third the cost of kerosene, the most prevalent substitute fuel for cooking. However, if Project Gaia is to continue to deliver these benefits, a pernicious set of educational, political, and logistical barriers must be overcome. The final part of the study details these barriers, and it concludes by pointing out the significance of government consistency, technological appropriateness, and the coupling of energy services with commercial enterprises for efforts like Project Gaia.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Depositing User: Benjamin Sovacool
Date Deposited: 19 Jan 2016 14:08
Last Modified: 03 Jun 2016 10:20
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/58363
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