Millions of people in the world are caught in the dilemma of securing cooking fuel. With a solar cooker, a family can save a large portion of their cooking fuel expense and have more money for food, medicine, education and the necessities of life. This is the central objective of the Kyoto Twist Solar Cooking Society.
April 2007: The Kyoto Twist Solar Cooking Society (KTSCS) continues its efforts to raise funds for solar cooking projects that reduce poverty in sun-rich, fuel-poor countries while reducing greenhouse gas emissions. (The “twist” part of the name comes from the idea that those living in wealthier nations can change, or twist, their priorities and lifestyles to better share limited resources with those most in need.)
KTSCS works with nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) that have solar cooker experience and a proven track record in countries where solar cookers are an appropriate technology. NGOs can request an application packet for consideration of funding. Project structure, recipient family selection parameters, training procedures, and follow-up services must be described in detail. To track the effectiveness of the projects, and to provide accountability to its donors, KTSCS will track the success of recipient families, their financial savings due to solar cooker use, and their greenhouse gas emission reductions. KTSCS funded its first pilot project in November 2005.
The group that received funding — Ananda Marga Universal Relief Team (AMURT) — has worked in Haiti for over 15 years and has experience conducting solar cooker projects. “The Spirit of the Kyoto [Protocol] is international cooperation on what is now being called the biggest challenge mankind has ever faced ¬ massive and rapid climate change,” states the KTSCS Web site. “At an average cost of ten dollars per tonne, donating to KTSCS is an effective way to help make a difference. Cooking fires in the world today consume an estimated one billion cubic meters of wood or biomass annually, which produces an estimated one billion tonnes of carbon dioxide. Those are easy figures to remember and very significant in the mitigation of global warming.”