The Himalayan Rocket Stove Project
Saving 1 Million Trees!
Byron Bay, Australia, May 25, 2016 – Russell Collins, a Byron Bay local who has worked and travelled in Himalayan India over the past 25 years, is excited to announce that the ‘Himalayan Rocket Stove Project’ has been launched. As a social enterprise geared towards saving Himalayan trees through the use of ultra efficient wood stoves, it has the ambitious target of saving 1 million trees over the next 10 years.
Russell came up with the idea when he was in Ladakh in 2014. “I noticed that the forests of the lower Himalayas were being cut and trucked all over the mountains, then sold as firewood to needy people for heating and cooking. I had heard about rocket stoves being used in Africa and other third world countries, but their situations are completely different and their simple rocket stoves wouldn’t suit the needs of the homes I was visiting”
“I decided to develop a prototype that will work in the Himalayan context. It needed to fit straight into the homes of everyday village people who were accustomed to sitting on the floor whilst cooking on the stove top as it heated the room.” Russell said.
The Himalayan Rocket Stove addresses three of the key issues facing people and the environment of the Himalayas, those being deforestation, women’s health, and air pollution.
As a result of 2 years of experimental testing and prototyping, Russell has now come up with a rocket stove that is ready for production in India. The current version is able to heat water whilst being used as a cook top and room heater. A newer version that has the capacity to charge phones is also in development.
Based on case studies of fuel consumption in the Indian Himalayas along with the efficiency ratings of rocket stoves, Russell estimates that each stove will save one tree from being felled in the forests of the Himalayas each year.
Another benefit of reduced fuel demand is the greatly reduced impact on the health and wellbeing of village women and children who tend to do most of the foraging for wood. As early as their middling years, women from mountain villages often show signs of permanently stooped back from of a lifetime of carrying heavy loads. Each stove installed in a family house will save approximately 100 loads of wood (averaging 20kg each) from being carried by women and children over steep, and often dangerous terrain.
Rocket stoves also burn incredibly cleanly, emitting very little in the way of noxious fumes. Using 4 to 5 times less fuel than a traditional stove and being virtually non-polluting with the wood they do burn, the Himalayan Rocket Stove is a breath of fresh air to the often choked up valleys of the Himalayas during winter.
“In terms of CO2, we are looking at saving over 3.5 tons per stove, per year, from being released to the atmosphere.” Russell emphasised “This prevents the clean mountain air from being polluted, fostering health and respiratory benefits.”
Having attracted the attention of a charitable trust in the USA that had been following his progress with previous projects over a number of years, Russell was offered a grant to take his rocket stove into production in India.
Russell continued; “With seed funding in place, I am able to initiate the testing process which includes setting up a small production facility in northern India later this year. The focus will be on training and employing locals in the manufacturing and distribution process and getting as many units into the field as possible. The goal will be to produce at least 200 stoves this year for deep testing in the field.”
In order to raise additional funds and awareness for this project, Russell has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indigogo. Every dollar raised through the crowdfunding will go toward making more stoves.
“The bulk of these test stoves will be given away to needy schools, nunneries and monasteries. We will also get subsidised stoves out to low-income families. By making a donation to our campaign, you are helping us raise the funds necessary to get more Himalayan Rocket Stoves into the field where they need to be.” Russell concluded.
Anyone can make donations towards this positive cause by visiting – https://igg.me/at/himalayanrocketstove
To read more about the Himalayan Rocket Stove, visit – http://himalayanrocketstove.com/
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Himalayan Rocket Stove Project
Name: Russell Collins
Location: Byron Bay
Phone: +61 432 294 223