by Lindsay Saperstone, International Communications Coordinator
We are always amazed by our local partner’s innovations in conservation, especially when it comes to clean cookstove design and construction. In Nicaragua, we partner with Proleña, an organization dedicated to protecting the local forests. One way they accomplish this is with fuel-efficient stoves, which greatly reduce fuelwood and charcoal consumption and indoor air pollution.
One of Proleña’s cheapest and most efficient cookstove models is a small charcoal stove known as the Rapidito. The stove sells for C$ 550.00- C$665.00 (approx. $25 USD). When the stove first came out, Proleña decided to have a naming contest and asked dozens of women to try the stove and then write down their name suggestions. Ironically, more than half of the attendees chose the same name!
“El Rapidito”, meaning “the quick one” in Spanish, reduces cook time and charcoal use by up to 50 percent. Proleña’s Technical Director, Leonardo Mayorga explains that “while most people think of carbon stoves (charcoal) as only being good for beans and asado (a type of roast meat), the Rapidito’s built in temperature control means the stove can cook a large variety of foods that other charcoal stoves can’t accommodate.”
A new season is beginning at Trees, Water & People’s three Nicaraguan tree nurseries. The end of the year is when the nurseries are cleaned and prepared for the next season’s plantings. We’ve bought most of our seed, most of our soil substrate, and staff have started to build the rows in which hundreds of thousands of trees will be planted.
In partnership with Proleña, TWP will grow our reforestation program in Nicaragua along three major lines in 2013. One is producing trees for our network of Forest Replacement Associations and their farmers. These farmers grow trees on their land to diversify their income through forest products like fruit, fuel, and in the longer term, lumber.
The next line is growing trees for demonstration plots at the National Center for Biomass Energy and Climate Change Research, in La Paz Centro, Nicaragua. We have plans in place for the creation of this new center and we are working with our partners to develop agroforestry models appropriate to the local climate, soils, and hydrology.
The third and most important, is finding ways to keep our supporters – both individual supporters and corporate partners – appraised of our progress throughout the year. Global Giving is one great channel through which to do this, but our blog and website are other great sources of information that help us stay connected.
Thank you always for your kind support, and never hesitate to get in touch to see how you or people you know can get more involved in supporting TWP’s reforestation projects. You can reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are working with our long-time NGO partner, Proleña, in Nicaragua, to establish the National Center for Biomass Energy & Climate Change near La Paz Centro, Nicaragua.
The Center will be an educational resource where communities can learn about managing forests, renewable energy, cleantech, and clean cookstoves. In addition to the core training, we will develop the Center as a global facility, where people from around the world will be empowered with the skills that will help them adapt to climate change in their region.
Features of the National Center for Biomass Energy & Climate Change:
Here’s a report with lots of great pictures (for those who don’t speak Spanish) of several Nicaraguan communities where we will be doing the multi-year health study on how the Eco-stoves benefit local women. Partnering with us on this project are Colorado State University, PROLENA, and Casa de Mujer, a Nicaraguan NGO based in Granada.
Here’s a report from PROLENA (in Spanish) with some good pictures from our stove project in Nicaragua. There’s a really good picture on the bottom right of page 6 of a women making tortillas on an Eco-stove.