Reducing household air pollution: new tool to improve the transition to cleaner cooking

A summary of research published in PLOS ONE

Almost 4 in 10 people do not have access to any clean cooking fuel and technology. Indoor stoves, often used for cooking in economically developing nations, cause indoor air pollution. This can badly affect a person’s health.

This paper describes a tool that was developed by the World Health Organization (WHO). It can be used by policymakers to help people move over to using a cleaner fuel for cooking. This paper gives an overview of how the tool was produced and its advantages and disadvantages.

The tool aims to promote discussions between healthcare professionals, the government and industry representatives to address the challenges and solve any problems faced.

The tool includes 16 different cleaner cooking options instead of the more polluting stoves and fuels. There are:

  • transitional or cleaner options, that offer some health benefits, and
  • clean options, that meet emissions levels in the WHO Guidelines.

This means that countries can tackle the transition in different ways, depending on their own needs.

The paper suggests this tool can be a beneficial aid for health and government decision-makers to plan the steps needed to speed-up the move towards cleaner cooking technologies. This is important as it will help to improve the health of people cooking using fuels that can be dangerous to them. It will also help to combat air pollution.

Read the original research paper

Title: The benefits of action to reduce household air pollution (BAR-HAP) model: A new decision support tool