In the News
For the Hindi version of the Press Release regarding the 6th SCI World Conference 2017, click here.
Sacramento-Based/Worldwide Group to Host
International Solar Cooking Event
in India Jan. 16-18
Solar Cookers International, a global nonprofit promoting solar cooking for 30 years, is hosting a diverse cross-section of leaders, farmers, trainers, and others at the sixth Solar Cookers International World Conference in the state of Gujarat, India, from Jan. 16-18, 2017.
Attendees will discuss some of the most pressing issues on the planet. For example, women who cook family meals over open fires suffer deadly consequences. “She and her children breathe thick smoke for hours every day – the equivalent of smoking 400 cigarettes per hour,” said Julie Greene, executive director of Solar Cookers International (SCI), which is headquartered in Sacramento. “When you multiply her activity by billions of meals every day, you realize the life-changing difference solar cooking makes.”
The conference will provide opportunities for SCI’s 500+ global partners, working in 133 countries, to share innovations and expertise on many aspects of solar thermal cooking technologies. More information is available online at solarcookers.org.
Attendees will include rural women from Tanzania; village women from Nepal; people from a temple in India; a restaurant in southern France; a fresh-cheese dairy operated by indigenous families in Chiapas; fish farmers from Bangladesh; and a Japanese organization working in an Ethiopian refugee camp.
“They’ll share their expertise in cooking with free, renewable energy,” said Greene.
The world's most influential solar cooking experts – scientists, entrepreneurs, policy makers, educators and field project managers from more than 25 countries – will share their transformative work in a “living green” technologies venue, the Muni Seva Ashram. “More than 40 presenters from 19 countries will present their innovative discoveries in solar cooking work,” Greene said.
As recently as 2012, the World Health Organization (WHO) said that close to 3 billion people lacked access to clean or modern energy for cooking. In some remote areas, gathering firewood requires thousands of women to have to hike 10 miles or more and carry back firewood. ”Sometimes, on their way to or from the trees, they’re attacked, beaten, raped,” Greene said.
Solar cooking empowers women, protects the environment, and improves human health and potential, she added, while impacting community economies as solar cooking devices are made with local materials by entrepreneurs in developing areas.
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EDITORS: For more information or to arrange an interview with Julie Greene, please contact Jane Einhorn, Public Relations Consultant, at 916.792.0025, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Sacramento-Based International Group Ranked in Top Three
In November InterAction announced that Solar Cookers International placed in the top three for the Data Quality Award given by InterAction, an alliance of more than 180 nongovernmental organizations around the world , with offices in Washington, D.C.
InterAction’s members include American Red Cross International Services, Oxfam, World Vision, and Habitat for Humanity International.
SCI’s contributions were honored for their comprehensive, timely, accurate and complete data recording.
SCI specializes in convening global conversations to promote solar cooking as a solution to environmental destruction and other serious problems related to open-fire cooking.
SCI’s research and evaluation specialist recently made public that data collection reveals that more than 10 million people have been impacted by solar cooking since 1990 (SCI was founded in 1987).
Working with professionals and university partners, SCI is working to create consumer standards that will help people anywhere in the world to determine which type of solar cooker would work best for their climate, needs and priorities. SCI also engages in United Nations advocacy work with a team that focuses on women’s empowerment, zero-emission cooking, and educational efforts demonstrating how solar cooking meets all of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.
For more information, visit solarcookers.org.
Contact: Julie Greene, Executive Director
Solar Cookers International
Giving Back in Malawi
By Kevin Gouveia
What do two Navy retired vets, a chef and a dentist have in common? Their love for giving back. Training a new generation of medical students, helping farmers boost production of existing crops, and introducing a new variation of crops while helping to educate the next generation of Malawian youth are just some of the projects these four have undertaken with the help of their friends and volunteers.
This month will be the eighth trip for our group from the U.S. to Malawi, lovingly known as the Warm Heart of Africa. In 2010 Robert Hampton, DDS and his wife Claudia Sansone, CCP, visited Lilongwe, Malawi with hopes of establishing a dental clinic at Daeyang Luke Hospital. During the next few trips, Rob would carry an entire dental clinic packed in boxes, suitcases, etc. and delivered the supplies and equipment to the hospital, while Claudia would visit the nearby village of Dothi to experience the local culture. Claudia sat down with chiefs of the village and inquired as to what they needed the most. The response was a school.
Claudia and Rob returned back to Napa, California, and shared their love for Malawi with Rebecca and me, and once we heard of the work they were doing, we were hooked and United Village Transformation (Food is Life and Education is the Seed) was born.
Rebecca, Claudia and I encouraged the launch of a pre-school in a village that had no compulsory education. Dothi Village now has a 24'x30' school with three teachers, a children's garden, a large village garden, fruit orchard and a kitchen with Changu Changu Moto fuel-efficient cook stoves inspired by our friends at Ripple Africa, our team UVT volunteers made this happen.
Given only seven percent of the population has access to electricity and knowing sustainability is the key, the villagers have learned to make soap, menstrual pads and solar cooking, using the sun as its fuel. The children are joyous with the opportunity to learn. We have only just begun!
*SCI donated two boxes of Cookits to the Sansones to give to the community in Malawi
Edible Manhattan - Solar Cooking: The No-Fuel, No-Emissions Way to Make Dinner
By Rachel Nuwer
Arline “AJ” Lederman didn’t intentionally set out to study what open-fire cooking means for the world’s woods and women.
For years, the art historian split her time between her Hoboken home and rural Afghanistan, studying traditional embroidery that women there specialize in. But during the village visits, she saw that women spend most of their time on something else: searching for anything to burn — sticks, leaves, animal dung — and that as a result much of the country’s former forests had been stripped bare. The problems didn’t end there: back home, they and their families coughed over open fires in smoke-filled rooms.
“I saw how hard their lives were because of the need for fuel,” Lederman says. “It was wrenching to see that women who had such skill and talent, who could create such a high level of beauty, were trapped.” Trapped, that is, in the constant search for flammable fuel.
Construction Review Online - Profile: Solar Cookers International
Solar Cookers International’s mission is to spread solar thermal cooking technology to benefit people and environments.
Solar Cookers International works to solve the problem of inadequate household energy facing nearly 3 billion people on our planet. Since human health, quality of life, and environments are affected by cooking fuel choices, we offer a solution to the difficult choices nearly half of all families make every day: whether to buy fuel, or to buy food and other family needs. The sun’s free energy is a viable solution for all who live where the sun shines.
The New York Times - Afghanistan’s Last Locavores
By Patricia McArdle, Solar Cooking Advocate and former SCI board member
"Many urban Americans idealize “green living” and “slow food.” But few realize that one of the most promising models for sustainable living is not to be found on organic farms in the United States, but in Afghanistan. A majority of its 30 million citizens still grow and process most of the food they consume. They are the ultimate locavores.
During the 12 months I spent as a State Department political adviser in northern Afghanistan, I was dismayed to see that instead of building on Afghanistan’s traditional, labor-intensive agricultural and construction practices, the United States is using many of its aid dollars to transform this fragile agrarian society into a consumer-oriented, mechanized, fossil-fuel-based economy.
In 2004, the Department of Energy carried out a study of Afghanistan. It revealed abundant renewable energy resources that could be used to build small-scale wind- and solar-powered systems to generate electricity and solar thermal devices for cooking and heating water."
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
World Pneumonia Day highlights importance of cooking with solar energy
November 12th is World Pneumonia Day, which urges us to acknowledge unnecessary child deaths due to a preventable illness.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) in its 2014 report, emissions inhaled from indoor air pollution is the cause of more than 50% of deaths among children less than five years old. (2014)
Eliminating indoor air pollution, especially smoke from traditional wood cooking fires and kerosene lamps, reduces the risk of children dying from pneumonia.
“You have lit a wood fire in the middle of your small kitchen. Now, close the windows. Bend over the fire, feel the heat of the flames, and breathe in the smoke. Now, stay in that position and stir the food in your pot for one hour. That's what women and children who cook over wood fires endure every day,” said Julie Greene, executive director of Solar Cookers International. “The more women who have the knowledge and tools for cooking with no-emission solar energy, the more children will breathe cleaner air and escape a miserable death from respiratory diseases, such as pneumonia.”
Solar energy is a stunningly simple solution to indoor air pollution. Since 1990, more than 2.7 million solar cookers have been distributed worldwide, giving women and their children healthier alternatives to cooking with wood and charcoal.
Solar Cookers International is the world’s leading source of solar cooking information in the world, and connects solar cooking experts and projects in 124 countries.
“Pneumonia is a horrible disease that kills children. What could each of these children have grown up to accomplish? World Pneumonia Day is a wake-up day, a reminder that we have it in our power to prevent these deaths,” said Greene.
To learn more, visit www.solarcookers.org
Contact: Julie Greene, Executive Director
Solar Cookers International
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Solar Thermal Cooking Mitigates Climate Change
Pope Francis has convened a landmark summit, “Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity: The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development”, hosted at the Vatican on April 28.
Human beings are using natural resources at a faster rate than at any time in human history. Food, fresh water, minerals, and energy are consumed at an unsustainable pace. But the amount of solar energy that reaches the Earth in only one hour could power all human activity for one year.
“Our ability to capture solar energy effectively today will determine the quality of human life twenty years from now,” said Julie Greene, Executive Director of Solar Cookers International, a nonprofit organization working with 350 solar cooker designers and project managers worldwide. “People who learn how to make and use solar thermal devices for cooking and making safe drinking water--the most common of all human needs—are liberated from costly dependence on scarce or expensive fuels like wood, charcoal, and fossil fuel products. In the aftermath of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake in Nepal on April 25, we clearly see that cooking with solar energy would be an immediate solution to provide hot food and clean drinking water to survivors,” Greene continued.
Emissions from 3 billion daily cooking fires contribute to air pollution and climate change.
“Solar thermal energy can be a game-changer for the nearly 3 billion people who cook food and make their drinking water safe by building fires under cooking pots,” said Greene. “The 2.2 billion people who live on less than $2 a day are also likely to live in stressed environments. Forests can’t regenerate at a sufficient pace to keep up with demand for wood fuel; fossil fuels have high financial and environmental costs.”
Free solar energy is an important equalizer that offers energy access to people in all socioeconomic levels, in both hemispheres, on all continents. Solar has higher energy efficiency than fossil or biomass fuels making it a true modern energy solution for our overburdened planet. To learn about the global solar cooking movement, contact email@example.com.
ABOUT SOLAR COOKERS INTERNATIONAL (SCI): a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 organization leading and convening the global solar cooking sector since 1987. Implementing the 1995 world’s largest refugee camp solar cooking project, SCI today maintains the world’s most comprehensive, free online resource of solar cooking, http://www.solarcooking.org. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
CONTACT: Julie Greene, Executive Director, Solar Cookers International
1919 21st Street, Suite 203, Sacramento, CA USA 95811
Tel: +1 (916) 455-4499 Fax: +1 (916) 455-4497