Our purpose in this manual is to emphasise not so much construction methods for specific stove models, but the whole complex question of how we can help poor people develop solutions to their problems, focussing on cookstoves. This requires an understanding of deforestation, declining crop yields, migration to the cities, and the daily struggle to find fuel, seen from the viewpoint of the peasant, the villager and the urban poor.
Chapters 1-4 explain ways of working with villagers to design stoves; we look at systems for spreading information and for training builders; and we point out some of the worst mistakes you could make in this very delicate process.
The technical information in Chapters 5-7 gives pointers for selecting, designing and testing stove systems, but it should be seen as a tool for accomplishing an integrated program which includes conserving fuel and land, employing local people, encouraging villagers' self-reliance and reducing dependence on imports.
The manual is especially directed to
1. Field workers: volunteers, extension agents and relief workers, in both rural and urban situations.
2. Administrators and policy planners: people involved in forestry and erosion control programs, renewable energy specialists.
3. Researchers in stove technology: workers at appropriate technology centers and rural development agencies.