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Development and Energy in Africa. Improved Woodfuel Saving Technologies (Stoves and Ovens) (Tanzania Case Study). Jensen Shuma (TaTEDO). Introduction. Tanzania is endowed with energy resources but m ore than 80 percent of the total energy used in Tanzania is consumed in rural areas.

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Improved Woodfuel Saving Technologies (Stoves and Ovens) (Tanzania Case Study)

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Development and Energy in Africa

Improved Woodfuel Saving Technologies(Stoves and Ovens)(Tanzania Case Study)

Jensen Shuma (TaTEDO)

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  • Tanzania is endowed with energy resources but more than 80 percent of the total energy used in Tanzania is consumed in rural areas.

  • Biomass, particularly wood-fuels constitutes about 90 percent of total energy consumption.

  • The overwhelming dependence on biomass energy is greatly contributing to poverty and environmental degradation.

  • In an attempt to address this situation, different development partners have continued to extend their support to the energy sector.

  • Unfortunately, the above initiatives are mostly geared towards electricity provision with limited efforts to improved cooking fuels from better woodfuel management, stove efficiency and transition to modern fuels.

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Case of Improved Woodfuel Saving Technologies


  • The Improved Woodfuel Saving Stoves,was implemented from 1999 to 2003 by TaTEDO.

  • In the year 1992, TaTEDO modified improved charcoal stove designs adapted from the Energy 1 Project that was implemented by the MEM from 1988 to 1992.

  • One of the outputs of the adaptive research of TaTEDO was the development of charcoal ovens for baking and roasting

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  • In order to promote these technologies, TaTEDO created awareness and conducted training for artisans on how to produce improved charcoal stoves and for women on how to bake using TaTEDO improved charcoal ovens in 1999.

  • To strengthen the capacity of providing training services, TaTEDO established workshops at

    • Vingunguti (Sahara Agroup),

    • TaTEDO main office in Kijitonyama

    • the other workshop for producing ceramic parts of the same products from clay soil was established at its field station (nowadays called SEDI) at Goba.

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  • High acceptability of the developed improved charcoal stoves and ovens from users encouraged TaTEDO to expand its activities to Kilimanjaro, Coast, Shinyanga and Mwanza regions

  • Through participatory adaptive research, improved charcoal stoves and ovens were modified and adopted to suit the requirements of communities.

  • TaTEDO managed to develop a total of 12 prototypes of stoves and 6 types of ovens.

  • The thermal efficiency of these stoves and ovens compared to the traditional ones has been raised to between 30 and 40 percent.

  • This implies that improved stoves can save consumption of charcoal by 40 to 50 percent compared to traditional charcoal stoves.

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  • To address the problem of quality control and further adoption of improved stoves, TaTEDO introduced element of business and market development for improved woodfuel saving technologies (stoves and ovens ),

  • The objective of this business was to produce and sell in large scale improved woodfuel saving technologies such as

    • charcoal stoves,

    • charcoal ovens,

    • firewood stoves,

    • firewood ovens,

    • biowaste stoves, etc

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  • The impact study was carried out in different stove production groups (workshops), households and business enterprises which benefited from TaTEDO initiatives.

  • Information collection was conducted through previous report reviews, consultations, interviews, field observations, questionnaires, meetings, etc

  • All these methods focused mostly on outcomes and impact of improved woodfuel saving stoves and ovens from the target population.

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Assessment Framework

  • AF is a framework of evaluating impacts of energy interventions in two stages (designing and implementation)

  • Objective

    • The case study aims at testing and assessing the performance of Assessment Framework (AF)( whether it can give anticipated results)

    • Get lessons of improving the this tool in order to get a better ways of assessing the impacts of energy interventions

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Raw Materials (clay liners, metal sheets, etc), training materials and expertise, Artisans


Capacity building, adaptive research, market development, production and sales



Clay Liners

Woodfuel saving stoves and ovens


Energy Services







Social (Health and Education)

Natural resources


Woodfuel saving

Time Saving

Reduced indoor air pollution

Money saving

Forest conservation

Reduced women drudgery

Reduced respiratory diseases

the kitchen

Income generation



Environment Conservation MDG7)

Gender equality (MDG3)

Health Improvement (MDG 4, 5, 6)

Poverty Reduction (MDG1)

The Causal Chain for Improved Woodfuel Saving Technologies in Tanzania

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The Result of the Case Study

  • It was observed that some households are still using open three stone stoves with low thermal efficiency of 7-10 percent.

  • In the urban areas, some households are using metal charcoal stoves with low thermal efficiency of between 10-15 percent widely used for cooking.

  • All such low efficient stoves are also used in social centres (schools, dispensary, etc) and in small and medium enterprises (beer brewing, bread baking, food vending, etc).

  • Only 45 percent of the households in Dar es Salaam and 20 percent of households in the countryside, have adopted improved woodfuel saving stoves and ovens.

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  • Income generation and Employment

    • Production of improved woodfuel saving stoves has been one way of generating income and employment for trained artisans, village technicians and women,

    • more than 600 small entrepreneurs have engaged in the production and selling of efficient woodfuel stoves

    • To energy related SMEs (food vending, beer brewing, baking, meat roasting, etc), use of improved fuelwood saving technologies decreased the energy input costs by 45% and move towards:

      • Increased overall profitability, which means more income is earned to the entrepreneurs;

      • Increased viability of the enterprise and subsequent more employment opportunities

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  • Monetary Savings

    • improved fuel-wood saving technologies consume less wood simultaneously generating enough heat, and thus less money is spent in purchasing woodfuels.

    • The average price of a bag of charcoal is around Tshs. 20,000 and contains normally 30kg charcoal.

    • Annual amount of charcoal used by a household with traditional charcoal stoves is 1080 kg (36 bags) a year.

    • The amount is significantly lower for households using improved charcoal stoves, which is 370 kg (12.4 bags) a year

    • Annual fuel cost savings per householdwill be about Tshs. 118,000.

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  • Time Savings

    • Women and children are the main suppliers of firewood accounting to 60% and 23% respectively;

    • The average time and walking distance for fetching and transporting firewood in many areas is 4-5 hours at a distance of 6 km.

    • adoption of woodfuel saving stoves has minimized the frequencies of collecting woodfuels from 5 times to less than 2 times per week

    • The time gained is spent for other family productive and social activities

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  • Forest Conservation

    • improved woodfuel saving stoves and ovens have reduced quantity of woodfuel used in household, social centres and SMEs.

    • A household using three stones stove consumes around 2880 kg/year of firewood.

    • improved firewood stove consumption is around 1728 kg/year/household,

    • annual saving is around 1152kg/household (equivalent to more than 20 trees/year).

    • For households using improved charcoal saving stoves, annual charcoal saving is 10kg/household which is equivalent to around 60 treescompared to use of traditional metal stove.

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  • Health Improvements

    • A better burning process in improved stoves reduces the emission of smoke and associated toxic gases (e.g. Carbon monoxide, Hydrocarbons, Nitrous Oxides, Sulphur Oxides, etc).

    • The quality air in the kitchen and households has made more people to use more improved woodfuel saving technologies (stoves and ovens) thereby less exposure to indoor pollution and consequently reduced respiratory diseases.

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  • Gender Equality Improvements

    • Women are responsible for collection of woodfuels in rural and peri-urban areas,

    • most of women’s time is spent in searching firewood,

    • women are exposed to health hazards from smoke and carbon dioxide and other poisonous gases, generated by using inefficient stoves

    • adoption of woodfuel saving stoves has minimized the frequencies of collecting woodfuels by less than 2 times per week.

    • Improved woodfuel saving stoves have also reduced the hazards of in-door air pollution by reducing smoke in the kitchen.

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Lesson Learnt

  • The following are some of lessons learnt:

    • Need for baseline survey for conducting situational analysis before project implementation.

    • Need to incorporate the AF tool in the project monitoring and evaluation systems,

    • Need to determine appropriate time of assessing the impact depending on the type of the project (three years after implementation phase may not be enough for other projects),

    • The user (in the casual chain) should try to capture intermediate results and outcomes. Otherwise, they can be forgotten.

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Thank you for your attention

TaTEDO, P. O. Box 32794, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Tel: +225-22-2700438/2700771

Fax: +255-22-2774400



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