Four billion people in the global south cook in smokey, dangerous conditions, burning sticks, charcoal, and dung in confined spaces with poor ventilation. Exposure to cooking smoke is one of the leading causes of human misery, leading to premature death for up to 4 million people each year and chronic illness for many more. Overharvesting the land for cooking fuel contributes to deforestation, erosion, and increased landslide risk. Gathering fuel consumes much precious time, primarily from women and children, that could be better spent on education, livelihoods, and other productive activities. Deforestation, charcoal production, and smokey cooking fires all contribute to climate change.
A variety of improved cooking systems are emerging with the potential to solve the cooking crisis. Heza focuses on the cleanest, most climate friendly alternatives that meet Tiers 4 and 5 on the ISO rating system for cookstoves and can operate on renewable sources of energy. We are particularly targeting biomass pellets fueling gasifier stoves because this solution has the potential to provide the lowest cost of cooking across a wide range of geographies. By focusing on renewable fuels we support circular economies and lean into the sustainability component and climate healing aspirations of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 7—of ensuring access to affordable, reliable, modern, and sustainable energy for all.
We believe that private sector clean cooking enterprises operating at scale are essential to solving the cooking crisis.
Through advocacy, research, communication, and financial support for companies with promising solutions and scalable business models, Heza seeks to give the emerging Tier 4+ cooking sector a hand up so it can stand on its own and solve one of the most intractable problems in international development.
Please join with us to bring healthier, more productive and smoke-free lives to 4 billion people, a sustainable future to the forests of the global south, and much needed reduction in the emission of climate disrupting pollution into our fragile atmosphere.