— Breath of Fresh Air

A journey of a thousand miles

August 8, 2017
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cookstoves built this year!

A journey of a thousand miles

Sometimes, in thinking about climate change, the problem can seem so big, so amorphous, that we don’t know where to begin. A gem of ancient wisdom may help: A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.

In 2004, Proyecto Mirador took its first steps on a long journey in Honduras to address climate change by installing efficient cookstoves in rural areas that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Since then, Proyecto Mirador has taken 141,000 steps. That’s the number of improved cookstoves that have been built and are in operation across the country. Another 24,000 will be built this year. With your support, this project has come a long, long way.

A single step

Proyecto Mirador recently built one of the new stoves in the home of Serapia Reys. “Ten years with my old traditional stove gave me a cough and hurt my vision. This one is clean, much more economical, and much quicker to cook. Since my children collect the wood, we also have more time now together as a family.”

With her new cookstove, Mrs. Reys has reduced her use of firewood for cooking by 60 pounds per week and has reduced emissions of greenhouse gases in her household by at least 2.2 tonnes per year.

The journey continues

How far has this project traveled?

With 141,000 improved cookstoves in Honduras, the use of wood as cooking fuel is reduced by 200,000 tonnes every year, equivalent to 9 square miles of forest saved from destruction, and over the 15-year expected life of these stoves, equivalent to 135 square miles of forest. Manhattan, by comparison, has an area of less than 23 square miles. And over the same period, CO₂ emissions will be reduced by nearly 5 million tonnes.

With your support, this journey continues, enthusiastically. Mrs. Reys, so glad you took that first step, sends a resounding “Thank you!”