Add clean fuel to the fire

By Anjali Nayyar and Brian Wahl, Hindustan Times:

It is a matter of great concern that a large number of Indians still rely on inefficient and unhealthy energy sources. Approximately 80% of Indians cook and heat their homes with biomass fuels —largely wood and animal waste. This has a tremendous negative impact on people’s health and the Environment.

Experts estimate that about 3.5% of India’s total disease burden can be attributed to indoor air pollution resulting largely from biomass fuels.

Children are especially vulnerable to the effects of biomass fuels. Pneumonia, together with exposure to indoor air pollution, is the leading cause of death among children below five years of age. It accounts for more than a quarter of all deaths in this age group. Luckily, many of these deaths can be easily prevented with simple interventions that ensure a healthier living environment. Experts from institutes such as Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER, Chandigarh, and Johns Hopkins School of Public Health in Baltimore estimate that using cleaner fuels and improving ventilation can significantly reduce the risk of pneumonia and other respiratory illnesses… Read more

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