The Green Charcoal of Africa
Nowadays, people witness the disastrous effects of deforestation presented in African countries. The issue of deforestation in this region is directly connected with the charcoal business, which uses a considerable amount of wood to produce charcoal. Thus for millions of Africans, charcoal is considered to be a primary source of energy for essential household issues, such as cooking and heating. As a result, at the moment, many African countries suffer from deforestation, greenhouse effect, and a decrease in biological diversity. Furthermore, the burning of charcoal can negatively influence people’s health since it provokes such illnesses as pneumonia and lung cancer. Therefore, it is essential to develop a solution of how to implement different eco alternatives of charcoal in Africa, which will be sufficient enough and, most importantly, become widespread in communities around Africa.
To start with, nowadays, the charcoal business is deemed to play an essential role in Africa because it provides residents with the necessary energy. For instance, “In urban Lusaka, as in many other parts of Africa, charcoal dominates the household energy market. It is the main cooking fuel for most low- and middle-income households, and is also used for water and space heating” (Atteridge et al.). In many parts of the continent, people are deprived of electricity, kerosene, and cooking gas; as a consequence, they are forced to use charcoal for their needs. Therefore, the significant part of African countries have particular disadvantages of location and are in lack of political and economic stability. Africa is continuing to be isolated from global markets; as a result, globalization negatively impacts the country’s poverty and increases its rates. Thus, people live in such conditions; they can not afford to use electricity or cooking gas, which is deemed to be more expensive than charcoal. Consequently, my research leads me to empathize with African people, who suffered from the results of the burnt of charcoal. The constant use of this type of fuel can cause severe illnesses and the deterioration of all the aspects of biodiversity in the long run.
Although modern society is aware of the possible disastrous impact of charcoal usage, there are still several challenges that exist concerning solving the problem of charcoal usage. There are also several issues concerning placing charcoal with greener alternatives. For instance, one of the main reasons is the reluctance of implementing green charcoal alternatives into usage on the continent caused by the lack of financial support and distribution of alternative variants of charcoal. Nevertheless, African people significantly contributed to alleviating the problem by developing a number of alternatives of charcoal, which are made of banana skins, maize, sugar cane and coffee wastes. Accordingly, the representatives of African culture put all the efforts to provide access to ecological alternatives, which are regarded as affordable ones. As a result, it is crucial to elaborate on an innovative solution, which will contribute to tackling this issue.
Therefore, both Kenyan entrepreneurs and Cameroon students managed to create different types of green charcoal; it important to organize a range of promotional events dedicated to the dangerous consequences of the usage of charcoal in everyday life, and as a result to emphasize on the necessity to substitute it with some ecological alternatives. Such an event will become a useful tool to promote the significance of this problem and make people more responsible for their actions.
As a consequence, it is essential to develop a useful project, which will help to organize the process of these events, to determine strict deadlines, and most importantly to create a key message to communicate with the target audience. My project of promotional events will address cultural challenges complexities by providing a piece of reliable information about the usefulness and affordability of such alternatives as briquettes made of maize, sugar cane, and coffee wastes. Moreover, people can be positively influenced by the researchers from Germany, who participated in the creation of maize briquettes because the creation of this green charcoal became possible owing to the “Ugandan-German partnership between Christian Services International and Ndejje University” (Hall). Besides, the farmers, who have already experienced the benefits of the alternatives can positively influence other people’s decisions to replace charcoal. Nevertheless, African people accustomed to using charcoal because it is cheap and easy to transport since bananas and sugar cane grow plentifully in various African countries. Furthermore, “efforts to transform the biomass sector – specifically, the charcoal value chain – are well underway, and there are substantial opportunities to be realized” (Wanjiru et al.). Consequently, such green charcoals will prove their effectiveness and affordability in short terms.
During the development of my project, I anticipate facing such challenges as the lack of financing and the challenges of organizing the specific places of the promotional events. However, such problems can be easily solved by the involvement of funding from the government, which is interested in decreasing the rates of deforestation. Moreover, different governmental and non-governmental initiatives, which have already been interested in the change of energy use patterns, can provide necessary organizational and financial support (Atteridge et al.). These promotional events will be organized on the whole territory of the continent. My project will address people from different regions and, consequently, those from the UAE. Therefore, this project will have such a broad coverage in Africa; it will also manage to address international communities, which will considerably influence the fast resolution of this problem.
To sum up, now, the African continent is deemed to be the epicenter of deforestation and a decrease in biodiversity due to the extensive usage of charcoal. Thus, the production of charcoal leads to deforestation; subsequently, it negatively impacts biodiversity. For instance, many species of plants and animals are deprived of their natural habitat, and accordingly, this leads to their extinction. As a result, it was vital to create such a practical solution, as the organization of promotional events and, as a result, develop the project, which will help to apply this solution. Thus, this project will involve the participation of governmental, non-governmental organizations and cover a range of countries on the African continent; such events will help encourage people to use various types of green charcoal to improve the environmental situation and their lives.
Atteridge, Aaron et al. Transforming Household Energy Practices Among Charcoal Users In Lusaka,Zambia: A User-Centred Approach. Stockholm Environment Institute, 2013, pp. 7-14, https://www.jstor.org/stable/resrep00533.5. Accessed 11 Mar 2020.
Hall, Melanie. “Top 5 Greener Alternatives To Charcoal”. DW.com, 2018, https://www.dw.com/en/top-5-greener-alternatives-to-charcoal/a-43268826. Accessed 11 Mar 2020.
Wanjiru, Hannah et al. How Kenya Can Transform The Charcoal Sector And Create New Opportunities For Low-Carbon Rural Development. Stockholm Environment Institute, Kenya, 2016, https://www.jstor.org/stable/resrep02811. Accessed 11 Mar 2020.