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wePlanet in campaign to reduce charcoal use in Africa

Burning charcoal stove

Burning charcoal stove

Through their “Reduce Charcoal Use” campaign, wePlanet Africa is urging African citizens to sign an online pledge, and also take practical steps to transition from wood fuel to other forms of energy including LPG, biogas and electricity.

The campaign which commits individuals to pledge to reduce charcoal use in their homes, also seeks to raise awareness, promote sustainable alternatives, and combat the environmental challenges and health risks associated with the production and use of charcoal.
Besides agriculture and human settlement - both, factors of a rapidly growing population - charcoal and other wood fuels lie at the heart of deforestation in Africa. According to the International Energy Agency’s regional energy outlook, more than 70 per cent of families in Africa have no access to electricity and singularly depend on charcoal and other forms of wood fuel for cooking.  
“This contributes a great deal to deforestation, which poses severe threats to the environment, contributes to climate change and indoor air pollution,” says Patricia Nanteza, wePlanet Africa director.
Besides its devastating impact on forests and ecosystems, the production and use of charcoal also pose serious health risks, particularly in terms of indoor air pollution, a growing challenge for Africa. According to a Unicef report titled: Silent Suffocation in Africa, deaths from indoor air pollution in Africa have increased from 164,000 in 1990 to 258,000 in 2017 – a growth of nearly 60 per cent.  
According to the UN’s Food Agricultural Organisation (FAO), deforestation in Africa is happening four times faster than the global rate, resulting in an average loss of an estimated 40,000 square kilometres per year. The report notes that since 1990, over 200,000 square kilometres of forest habitats in Africa have been lost. That is roughly four soccer pitches worth of forests per day for 20 years.
“Deforestation leads to loss of biodiversity, increases carbon emissions and disrupts ecosystems and water cycles - a fact that makes worse the disease burden among local communities due to climate change,” Nanteza said while unveiling the campaign.
The ‘Reduce Charcoal Use’ campaign five strategies include raising awareness about the harmful impacts of charcoal use, promoting sustainable alternatives such as clean cookstoves and renewable energy sources, strengthening legislative frameworks to deter illegal charcoal production, supporting local initiatives that create sustainable livelihoods, and fostering collaboration and partnerships among various stakeholders.
“By actively engaging communities, governments, and the private sector, wePlanet Africa seeks to shift the energy landscape in Africa towards cleaner and more sustainable sources,” Nanteza said.
Timothy Machi, wePlanet Africa Kenya coordinator, says the campaign aims to be a catalyst for change, driving widespread adoption of sustainable alternatives and prompting governments to enforce regulations that protect forests and promote responsible land management practices.


+1 #1 kabayekka 2024-02-13 08:21
The Basoga tribes people in Agriculture Uganda have a traditional saying. Those big Mivule trees that used to cover much of their deciduous tropical forests in the 18th century -Jakula gyonyene!

In other words. Farmers in Africa although happily harvest timber and so on from the deep forest unfortunately they do not cultivate and grow forests.

One sees on TV temperate climate North Americans cutting huge trees for timber that have taken decades to grow, as they plant more of it for the next generations!
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+1 #2 Akot 2024-02-13 18:40
It's not just charcoal, but use of wood too, that MUST be tackled, or Africa will have less & less rain, thus dryness, famine, death!

Uganda that has clean electricity is letting TotalEnergies use its land to worsen climate with exploitation of oil that has no furtue as ALL have to fight to ensure a better climate for a better tomorrow!

Pitty, UN is alright with wars, gets billions through refugees & closing eyes to the fact that refugee camps in Uganda...have destroyed trees, grass, wetlands...!

Uganda will soon be in pain with agriculture as the land gets dryer, flooding comes as & when the earth wants to make its stand!

USA/UK/EU MUST say NO to continued migration from shithlles as without Real/Good Governance, populations doubles & they know their only chance is reaching these developed lands!
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