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International Partnerships

How cleaner fuel is transforming lives in Northern Malawi

The group has managed to save the equivalent of €7,000 from briquettes’ sales. As Olive explains, the income she earns through the business has opened opportunities for her and her family.

“Selling the briquettes helps us to pay the school fees for our children. Now we can also afford good food such as meat which will improve our health,” she says.

The briquettes also reduced the need for women to collect firewood. The task of sourcing wood to cut down and burn as charcoal typically falls to women who get up in the early hours of the morning and trek for long distances.

“We had been struggling because we had always been forced to hike into the mountains to search for firewood and break our backs to carry it back with us,” Olive says,

“But with the briquettes we just carry them in our bags, and light them to cook or prepare bath water for our husbands and children and then we are done,” Olive concludes.

As seen with this project, empowering women is key to work towards more gender-responsive climate solutions that address structural inequalities, while also pursuing the transition to a greener economy.