LPG Price Hike Forces Women Into Charcoal Use


As the price of Liquified Petroleum Gas,(LPG) escalates, women are exploring charcoal as alternative energy source to cook their food. This is even as women, especially, in rural Nigerian communities are facing wider health risks following the country’s intractable energy challenges. With hike in electricity tariff and rise in prices of LPG, known as cooking gas, more women in the cities have abandoned electric cooking stove and transiting into more use of charcoal.

It is estimated that in Nigeria, about 98,000 women die annually from use of firewood and charcoal. According to the managing director and chief executive officer of Gas 360, Emmanuel Uwandu, cooking with firewood and charcoal is equivalent to smoking 20 packets of cigarettes. Uwandu emphasised the dire situation, particularly in the Niger Delta region, where approximately 21,000 women lose their lives each year due to reliance on firewood and charcoal. “In Nigeria, 98, 000 women die annually from the use of firewood and charcoal and across the 774 local governments that translates to about 2,700 deaths annually,” 

He equated cooking with these traditional fuels to smoking 20 packs of cigarettes daily, highlighting the immense health risks faced by Nigerian women on a daily basis. He lamented the lack of attention given to this silent killer, stating that, while diseases like malaria and HIV/AIDS receive significant focus, the deadly impact of cooking with “dirty” fuels often goes unnoticed. Despite being the leading cause of mortality in Nigeria, clean cooking initiatives receive minimal funding compared to other health interventions. Uwandu urged both national and sub-national governments to prioritize clean cooking solutions and seize global opportunities to address this issue. Emphasising the importance of action, he stated that the global committee seeks robust clean action plans on policy and governmental support. Their aim is to facilitate the transformation of communities from reliance on dirty fuel to embracing clean cooking practices.

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Mrs. Idochi Emesiobi, from Rivers State told our Correspondent that she uses charcoal to cook and to her the smoke appear more tolerant than kerosene.

Similarly, Mrs. Ndianabasi John, who works in a big catering firm said she uses it at home and in her working place.

She said, it cooks faster and can cheaper to cook for big parties.

The MD Gasavant Africa, a gas infrastructure development firm and Financial Secretary of Nigeria Gas Association, NGA, said Federal Government should offer indirect incentive and tax benefits to spur investment in gas industry.

Iheme blamed rising LPG prices to scarcity of forex and prices spike during festive periods when increased cooking demands lead to higher consumption.

 

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God'swill Ofigo
Nigeria Blogger / Social Media Promoter/ Talent Manager/ Entertainer/ CEO OfyNaija Blog. WhatsApp: 0904709861

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