Fired Up: Building a Better Cook Stove
The metal cauldron cook stoves that people in developing countries use are simple in design. You fill them with a form of coal, the way you would a barbeque. When a person in a place like Ethiopia or the Congo needs to prepare a meal for her family (and women do much of the cooking in the countries that use cook stoves) there’s no gas or electric hotplate to fire up. She has to light the coals.
It’s not the most efficient way to cook. But we went to Vashon Island just west of Seattle to understand how cook stoves are actually getting better—and improving a whole host of other issues as they do. “Cook stoves are really a