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Wood-Conserving Stoves

Wood-Conserving Stoves

Wood-conserving stoves are saving thousands of trees, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and greatly improving women's and children's health in Central America.  Utilizing up to 50% less wood as a “traditional” open pit fireplace and reducing the amount of smoke and black carbon in the home, the wood-conserving stoves (or Justa stoves) being implemented by SHI are a radical and healthy change.  Traditionally, the walls and roofs of rural homes in Central America would be caked with black soot, while smoke being inhaled by women and children would be the equivalent of smoking 2 to 5 packs of cigarettes per day.  Such traditional stoves, notorious for consuming large amounts of wood, are also a main cause of respiratory infections, tuberculosis, eye disease and more.  According to the World Health Organization, about 1.6 million deaths around the world were associated with indoor air pollution or the burning of biomass as cooking fuel.  

Using a combination of bricks and adobes, the wood conserving stoves being installed by SHI Field Trainers and participants have been known to:

  • Cut wood consumption by up to 50%
  • Reduce indoor smoke by 90%, thus reducing carbon monoxide and particulate matter
  • Save an average of 1.5 tons of carbon emissions per year (according to tests conducted by Trees, Water, People)

Click the images below to see full-size diagrams on building your own Justa Stove!

Justa Stove Diagram (1)Justa Stove Diagram (2)


Give a Gift of Hope!How can you help? Give a Build a Wood Conserving Stove Gift of Hope to your friends and family!


Photos: Wood-Conserving Stoves

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