Worldwide, around 2.4 billion people still cook using solid fuels and kerosene in open fires and inefficient stoves. The resulting harmful household air pollution was responsible for an estimated 3.2 million deaths in 2020, according to the World Health Organisation. In Rwanda, firewood is most widely used for indoor fuel.
The University of Colorado has implemented a large-scale cookstove programme in Rwanda to switch users away from firewood to healthier propane cookstoves and to study the health impact of this intervention.
TRANSFORM funded research to develop and test whether dynamic sensors that alert users to high levels of indoor air pollution would encourage and reinforce the use of the new, healthier cookstoves.
The sensors provided a visual and audio alert when cooking pollution levels exceeded the threshold for indoor air pollution. A year-long study assessed the impact of this active feedback and evaluated whether it would increase the adoption of clean cooking behaviour and discourage traditional stove use.
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