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The Global Challenge of Clean Cookstoves: Why the World Must Unite



The Global Challenge of Clean Cookstoves: Why the World Must Unite

In remote villages of Kenya, smoke billows from traditional stoves, depicting a stark contrast as much of the world advances technologically. The clean cookstove challenge is at the center of this, tying together public health, environmental conservation, gender equality, and climate justice.

As we grapple with the urgent crisis of climate change, concerns arise not only from the melting glaciers but also from the kitchens of rural Africa, Asia, and South America. Alarmingly, nearly one-third of the global population remains without access to clean cooking technology. This leads to over a billion tonnes of carbon emissions each year, equivalent to the entire aviation industry, underscoring the gravity of the situation.

But handing out cleaner stoves isn’t a silver bullet. Abbas Mashoallah, CEO of Solaxy Group Corp., illuminated the depth of the challenge. “Our major hurdle in promoting clean cookstove projects isn’t just distribution, but encouraging sustained use. Education about the benefits of clean cookstoves is critical. We’re aiming to reshape perceptions, habits, and, ultimately, lives.”

Solaxy Group Corp.’s initiative to distribute 200,000 clean cookstoves in underserved Kenyan communities over the next two years is ambitious. Its success will depend on learning from and addressing issues encountered by previous similar endeavors.

Consider the concept of ‘stacking.’ This is where households accumulate various cookstoves, seeking the ideal one. Yet, if none prove satisfactory, they revert to their traditional methods. This highlights the need to understand and cater to local preferences and needs.

The Clean Cooking Alliance’s 2022 report emphasizes the importance of reducing firewood use, especially in areas with limited access to efficient stoves. Their insights reflect a broader challenge: it’s not merely about introducing a new stove, but ensuring these stoves are both efficient and culturally compatible.

It’s essential to remember that communities worldwide have relied on traditional stoves for generations. These practices are deeply rooted, intertwined with culture, taste, and tradition. Thus, the task extends beyond mere equipment replacement; it’s about evolving a centuries-old way of life.

Carbon finance offers promise, making projects more viable and allowing them to reach a broader scale. Yet, as the voluntary carbon market (VCM) seeks solutions for varied emissions sources, from deforestation to cooking inefficiencies, a united global effort is imperative. This isn’t the undertaking of a single entity, but a shared responsibility.

Governments are instrumental in this movement. Countries like India and Kenya have spurred the adoption of cleaner cooking through subsidies and pro-industry policies. Equally, the onus lies with businesses and investors. A study by FMO highlighted the importance of understanding local contexts, with the user in mind, and bridging market knowledge gaps.

With the looming shadow of climate change, the cookstove dilemma reflects broader environmental and social challenges. It’s a poignant reminder that our journey to sustainability encompasses not just grand infrastructure projects but also the heartbeats of homes worldwide.

At this pivotal moment, one thing is clear: global collaboration is essential, not only in grasping the nuances of the clean cookstove challenge but in executing collective, impactful actions. The narrative woven by the smoke from our stoves needs a revision. Let’s unite to script a cleaner, healthier future.


Unveiling Codependency Its Connection With Substance Use Disorder



Codependency is a complex and often misunderstood concept that has profound implications for individuals and their relationships. It is frequently associated with substance use disorder (SUD), forming a complicated web that can hinder recovery and exacerbate the challenges faced by those affected. This article aims to shed light on the intricate nature of codependency, its relation to SUD, and the pathways toward healthier, more balanced relationships and recovery.

Defining Codependency

Codependency is a relational pattern characterized by excessive reliance on another person, often to the detriment of one’s own needs, well-being, and self-esteem. It typically involves a one-sided, unhealthy emotional or psychological dependence on a partner, family member, or friend. Codependent individuals often prioritize others’ needs, emotions, and desires over their own, often to an extreme degree.

Codependency and Substance Use Disorder: A Complex Connection

The link between codependency and SUD is intricate and often reciprocal. While not all codependent individuals develop SUD, and not all individuals with SUD are codependent, there are several ways in which these two issues can interconnect:

1. Enabling Behavior: Codependents often engage in enabling behaviors, such as covering up for the addicted individual’s actions, making excuses, or providing financial support. These actions inadvertently perpetuate the addiction.

2. Emotional Dependence: Individuals with SUD may become emotionally dependent on their codependent partners or family members for support, both financially and emotionally.

3. Shared Trauma: Codependency and addiction can have shared roots in trauma or dysfunctional family dynamics, creating a cycle of dependency and addiction within families.

4. Relief from Codependent Stress: Some individuals with codependent tendencies may turn to substances as a coping mechanism to alleviate the stress and emotional turmoil caused by their codependency.

5. Mutual Isolation: Both codependent individuals and those with SUD may become socially isolated as their behaviors and relationships become increasingly focused on the codependent dynamic.

6. Rescue Fantasy: Codependent individuals may hold a “rescue fantasy,” believing that their love and support can save the addicted individual from their substance abuse. This fantasy can lead to disappointment and further enabling.

Breaking the Cycle: Recognizing and Addressing Codependency

Recognizing codependency is the first step toward breaking the cycle and promoting healthier relationships, whether they are with individuals struggling with SUD or others. Here are some strategies for addressing codependency:

1. Self-Awareness: Begin by examining your own behaviors and patterns in relationships. Are you excessively focused on someone else’s needs to the detriment of your own? Do you struggle with setting and maintaining boundaries?

2. Seek Professional Help: Codependency can be challenging to address on your own. Consider seeking therapy or counseling to explore the root causes of codependency and develop healthier relationship skills.

3. Support Groups: Support groups for codependency, such as Codependents Anonymous (CoDA), provide a safe space to share experiences and gain insight from others who have faced similar challenges.

4. Develop Boundaries: Learning to establish and maintain healthy boundaries is crucial. This includes recognizing your own limits and communicating them assertively.

5. Self-Care: Prioritize self-care practices that nurture your physical, emotional, and mental well-being. This may involve hobbies, exercise, relaxation techniques, and mindfulness.

6. Challenge Negative Self-Talk: Work on improving your self-esteem by challenging negative self-talk and building self-compassion. You are deserving of love and respect.

7. Learn Healthy Relationship Skills: Develop healthier relationship skills, such as effective communication, active listening, and conflict resolution. These skills are essential for building balanced, supportive relationships.

Codependency and Recovery: Supporting Loved Ones with SUD

For those who have loved ones with SUD and recognize codependent tendencies within themselves, it is possible to navigate the path of recovery together. Here are some strategies for providing support while maintaining your own well-being:

1. Educate Yourself: Learn about SUD, its effects, and available treatment options. Understanding the nature of addiction can reduce feelings of confusion and helplessness.

2. Set Boundaries: Establish clear and healthy boundaries with your loved one. Communicate your limits and expectations, and be prepared to enforce them consistently.

3. Encourage Treatment: Encourage your loved one to seek professional treatment for their SUD. Offer support and assistance in finding appropriate resources.

4. Attend Support Groups: Consider attending support groups for family members of individuals with SUD, such as Al-Anon or Nar-Anon. These groups provide valuable insights and guidance from others who have faced similar challenges.

5. Practice Self-Care: Prioritize self-care and maintain your own well-being. Caring for yourself ensures that you have the emotional and physical resources to support your loved one effectively.

6. Avoid Enabling: Refrain from engaging in enabling behaviors that inadvertently support your loved one’s addiction. Instead, focus on supporting their recovery efforts.

7. Seek Professional Guidance: Consult with a therapist or counselor experienced in addiction and family dynamics. They can provide personalized guidance and strategies for navigating the complexities of codependency and addiction within a family.


Codependency and SUD are complex issues that can intertwine and exacerbate each other’s challenges. Recognizing codependent behaviors and seeking help are crucial steps in breaking the cycle and promoting healthier relationships. Whether you are personally grappling with codependency or supporting a loved one with SUD, remember that recovery is possible, and there are resources and strategies available to navigate these intricate and often emotionally charged situations. By fostering self-awareness, setting boundaries, and seeking professional guidance, individuals can begin the journey toward healthier, more balanced relationships and recovery.

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