Breathe Easy

Registry information: Verra or Gold Standard Impact Registry
Standard: Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) or Gold Standard (GS)
Unit type: Verified Carbon Unit (VCU) or Verified Emissions Reduction (VER)


According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) (2021), 2.4 billion people around the world (about one in three people globally) cook their food on polluting open fires or inefficient stoves, significantly harming their health and the environment. This style of cooking has particularly severe consequences for the health of women and children who are responsible for preparing meals.

The WHO also says household air pollution was responsible for an estimated 3.2 million deaths per year in 2020, including over 237,000 deaths of children under the age of five. According to WHO, inhaling smoke from traditional cookstoves is equivalent to smoking two packs of cigarettes per day.

Oxfam says the large amount of time women and girls need to spend on fuel collection further exacerbates the gender inequality gap and cycle of poverty.

The Clean Cooking Alliance states that up to one gigaton of carbon dioxide equivalent is produced every year from burning wood fuels, equating to about 2% of global CO2 emissions. The Alliance says: “Today’s highly efficient stoves can reduce fuel use by 30–60%, resulting in fewer GHG and black carbon emissions”.

In some countries, firewood and charcoal consumption is a major contributor to their annual deforestation rate.

Our projects

Our cookstoves carbon projects involve the distribution of cleaner, more efficient cookstoves to people and communities in Papua New Guinea, Nepal and Laos. These cookstoves have positive environmental, social and health benefits for communities.

These stoves significantly reduce the amount of charcoal and wood fuel needed to cook food by providing cleaner, more complete combustion. This results in less greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere during the cooking process, when compared to traditional, open-fire cooking. By reducing wood use, it also reduces the number of trees removed from forests for cooking fuel.

This leads to improved air quality within communities and a reduction in health issues related to traditional, open-fire cooking.

Because they require less wood, the stoves also reduce the amount of time women and children spend gathering firewood each week, allowing time for other activities that may include going to school.

The projects may contribute to the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Key facts
  • Project type: Efficient Cookstoves
  • Location: Africa, Asia, South America
Key impacts
  • Emissions prevention
  • Improved health
  • Often provides local employment in monitoring and delivery of project
Information sources
  • The carbon abatement reported by these projects has been scientifically measured using the relevant Cookstoves methodology. Carbon abatement independently verified as required under project standard (Gold Standard (GS) or the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS))
  • Contributions toward co-benefits are not required to be monitored and reported under the Verified Carbon Standard. Gold Standard however does require projects to monitor and report on at least 3 SDGs using scientific methods as determined by the standard. Contributions to the SDGs are then verified by the Gold Standard (note SDGs may vary depending on the specific project)
  • Impacts reported have been taken from project description documents for Cookstoves projects in TEM’s portfolio, which are provided by the project owners.

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