Bolivie - Distribution of solar cookers and drying kit to communities of small agricultural producers
- Selected project
- Feasibility study
- Impact assessment
Presentation of the NGO
Bolivia Inti Sud Soleil
The Bolivia Inti-Sud Soleil association (BISS), created in 1999 and based in Nantes, aims to develop and promote the use of ecological cooking in southern countries in order to improve the living conditions of the most vulnerable, tackle deforestation and forest degradation, and reduce CO2 emissions.
In the Andes (Peru, Bolivia, Chile), families are involved in the construction of solar cookers. In Africa (Benin, Senegal, Guinea, Morocco), projects aim at structuring production and sales channels for efficient wood-burning stoves.
Bolivia Inti – Sud Soleil also has an activity of information, dissemination, training and exchange of experiences around ecological cooking.
From 2000 to 2017, Bolivia Inti Sud Soleil has distributed more than 35,000 ecological cookers across Andes and Africa, impacting more than 185,000 people.
The context of the project
Ranked 118th out of 188 countries according to the Human Development Index in 2015 (UNDP – 2016), Bolivia is one of the poorest countries in Latin America.
Fossil fuels dominate the energy landscape in rural and urban areas. From 0.84 metric tons per capita in 1990, CO2 emissions increased to 1.93 in 2014 (World Bank – 2018). At the same time, solar radiation is one of the highest in the world. These exceptional sunshine conditions on almost 2/3 of the Bolivian territory, make solar energy a perfect alternative to fossil fuels.
In Bolivia, 95% of the 872,000 farms (2013 census – BISS data) correspond to family farming. For most of these small producers, the sale of their food products (street food) is their only income.
The project targets these small producers with the aim of allowing them to conserve and sell their surplus crops.
Presentation of the project
The energetic issue
In rural areas, wood is the main cooking fuel, thus accelerating the process of deforestation. This phenomenon is very visible on the Bolivian altiplano, at 4000 meters altitude, where vegetation is scarce and where many species of small shrubs (such as thola) are endangered.
The daily chore of collecting wood prevents women from developing other income-generating activities and prevents children from continuing their schooling. Moreover, wood cooking on inefficient fireplaces emits toxic and polluting fumes, women being the most exposed because they are the ones who ensure the preparation of meals. It is estimated that a «3-stone» household used by a family generates approximately 4 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year (BISS data).
A «typical» Bolivian rural community reserves 89% of energy consumption for cooking (BISS data).
In urban areas, domestic energy consumption is dominated by the use of gas, an expensive fuel to buy for the most vulnerable families. It can represent up to 30% of the monthly family budget (BISS data).
The solar radiation level in Bolivia is one of the highest in the world, with measurements ranging from 5.1 to 6.3 kWh / m2 / day in the regions of La Paz, Oruro, Chuquisaca and Tarija, and 5 , 1 to 8.5 kWh / m2 / day in the region of Potosí.
The solar cooker «box-types» consists essentially of a well-insulated wood box with a window (glass or plastic), through which sunlight can pass.
Within the box, sunlight is absorbed by the black base and walls (offset plate) or by the dark cooking pots, that is to say, the solar energy is converted into heat.
Temperatures of up to 130°C can be achieved with this method and up to 170°C if external reflectors are added.
Easy to construct with materials available everywhere as wood, plywood, aluminium, glass and sheep wool or cotton for the isolation.
Deforestation is dramatic: the population is cutting down the last trees. One solar cooker can save 100 trees in 15 years (average life : 15 years).