Reports & Publication

Impacts of Biomass Cook Stove Use on Air Pollution, Global Warming and Human Health in Rural Bangladesh

2002 |

The current government strategies and public perception of air pollution in Bangladesh emphasize only on urban outdoor environment, but some of the highest concentrations of pollutants actually occur in rural indoor environment. The levels of air pollution exposed by the women and children below five years in the kitchens of many millions of village homes during cooking apparently exceed levels found in the worse polluted cities of the world. Excessive use of the low quality biomass fuels (i.e., wood, crop residues, animal dung, etc.) in inefficient traditional cooking stoves with no flue or chimney generates smokes, particulate, carbon monoxide, methane and hundreds of organic compounds including several carcinogens. Based on the studies conducted in other countries and available data from the literature, emission rates of various common air pollutants and green-house gases (GHG) representative of the typical cooking condition of rural Bangladesh are presented in this paper. For most compounds, it appears that solid biomass fuels such as wood burning produces markedly higher emissions than any other fossil fuel (i.e., kerosene, LPG, etc.). The biomass burning emissions vary with fuel type, stove design, combustion conditions, ventilation rates, and duration of cooking. It is possible to reduce emissions and exposure significantly by introducing a stove with higher level of efficiency. Recommendations are provided to formulate and implement a nationwide high efficiency cook stove dissemination program considering policy, economic, and social factors of Bangladesh.

Tonle Sap Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Sector Project: An ADB-funded Latrine-Building Project in Cambodia

| KOICA, UNEP, caps

Water and sanitation are one of the most pressing issues facing people in rural Cambodia, especially around the Tonle Sap Lake and river basin. Of particular difficulty for sanitation advocates in Cambodia is the old habit of open defecation, with the result of exposing human excreta to the environment. This leads to water and soil contamination and to widespread disease outbreaks. For the many ‘floating communities’ of people living on the lake itself, this is an even larger problem, due to their direct contact with the water. The UN estimated that, in 2008, only 23\% of rural residents and 82\% of urban residents had access to improved sanitation, which means the country still has a long way to go to achieving ‘sanitation for all’. Indeed, rural water coverage is the second lowest in Asia, while infant mortality rates – due in part to high levels of waterborne disease – are the second highest in Asia.

Technical Brief on Rainwater Harvesting


A sufficient, clean drinking water supply is essential to life. Millions of people throughout the world still do not have access to this basic necessity. After decades of work by governments and organizations to bring potable water to the poorer people of the world, the situation is still dire. The reasons are many and varied but generally speaking, the poor of the world cannot afford the capital intensive and technically complex traditional water supply systems which are widely promoted by governments and agencies throughout the world. Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is an option that has been adopted in many areas of the world where conventional water supply systems have failed to meet people’s needs. The technical brief describes various rainwater harvesting systems and techniques.

Technical Brief on Compost Toilets


Many types of compost toilets are available today. They are designed to suit a variety of customs, cultures and climates, and vary enormously in price. Composting of human faeces is as old as the hills - it is Nature’s way of safely reintegrating human waste with the soil. All compost toilets, however simple or complex, are devices for helping Nature achieve this. Contrary to popular opinion compost toilets can be very clean and hygienic and do not smell. They save huge quantities of water in a world where water is becoming an increasingly precious resource. This technical brief describes a compost toilet that has proved to be most effective in waterlogged areas where pit-latrines and septic tanks are inappropriate.

An Environmental Assessment Of The Bay Of Bengal Region


This document is the final report of an environmental assessment in the Bay of Bengal carried out between April 1991 and February 1993, with special reference to fisheries. It includes edited versions of the status reports from every member country of the Bay of Bengal Programme (BOBP). They were presented at the regional workshop held in Colombo, February 2-6, 1993at the conclusion of the assessment. The objective was to assess the problems of environmental degradation in the coastal ecosystems in the Bay of Bengal by reviewing the existing information, analyzing available data and collating it all as a fundamental information base. In the long-term, the project could result in recommendations for coordinated activities in the countries as well as the region to achieve sustainable productivity from the coastal ecosystems and reduce the negative effects on the fisheries resources.

Water Supply & Sanitation: India Assessment 2002

| Planning Commission Government of India

Working on this report at the Planning Commission of India has been an invigorating experience. At the same time, all through its writing, there were dilemmas of various kinds. It is important, at the outset, to outline at least some of these. The size of this report was essentially governed by the guidelines by WHO and UNICEF for the country assessments. The guidelines essentially were meant to ensure a degree of standardisation across country reports. Considering the size and diversity of India and the multiplicity of institutions involved in water and sanitation interventions across the length and breadth of India, one significant and obvious dilemma was that it was impossible to acknowledge each one of them. The fact that some institutions and some  interventions have been referred to in this report does not in any way mean that the others are in any way less important or significant. This is particularly true of NGOs and their interventions and of the roles of the various external support agencies, which have in many instances, made invaluable contributions to the sector.