Prospects/consequences for cooking fuel

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21 April Consequences of cooking fuel: This paper is primarily based on a very sensitive and grave issue of the present times that is gaining immense attention for sometime. Health consequences from indoor smoke are quite severe and demand immediate attention. There is a strong link between exposure to air pollution through cooking fuels and health effects, which presents a grave scenario for the general public. This has been a seriously distressing issue especially in the developing countries over the past many years where dreadful smoky cooking fuels make up a major part of the air pollution. This paper reflects the grave consequences resulting from cooking fuels. (Kumar et al. 213) mentions that coal used for cooking in the developing countries produces smoke that reportedly contains many harmful indoor air pollutants which pose a serious threat to the patients of respiratory allergy like asthma and obstructive pulmonary disease. Health hazards related with cooking fuels is now an established fact and all researchers agree on at the point that most of the cooking smoke is produced by burning raw or unprocessed biomass fuels. Some of the major examples of biomass fuels are wood, straw, crop residues, and dung cakes. Dung cakes form a primary source of biomass fuels that is used for assisting cooking in all villages of the developing countries. The cruel reality is that the authoritative powers there seldom care to educate the people living in villages about the harmful consequences of indoor air pollutants produced from the cooking fuels. Solid fuel use like burning dung cakes and increased usage of traditional cooking stoves is considered a global health threat now, especially for women and children. This is because in the developing countries, mostly women and children stay in the houses while men remain outside at the workplaces. There is also a strong link between consequences of cooking fuel and deforestation. Increased deforestation has resulted from the continued employment of wood for cooking purpose in the developing countries. (Marten 256) mentions that many forests have disappeared in a very short time because people have rigorously been cutting trees, crop residues, and straws for cooking food in their homes. This has also resulted in convincing people in the developing countries like India to have more children, so that they can make all of them collect more fuel. The resulting increase in population consequently leads to more demand of cooking fuel, thus production of more indoor air pollutants which results in a vicious cycle. This produces a serious lethal effect on both social system and ecosystem, which is presented by (Marten 256) through the following figure: Deforestation and cooking fuel (chain of effects through ecosystem and social system), (Maten 256). Many research reports suggest today that the lethal effects associated with breathing cooking fuel are too severe to be overlooked.Apart from biomass fuels, cooking and heating with coal also produces a high percentage of air pollutants. It is mentioned in (Indoor air pollution) that complex mixtures of chemicals are produced as a result of using coal for cooking. Nitrous oxides, carbon monoxide, sulphur oxide, and carcinogens are some of the major air pollutants resulting from using coal for cooking. Small particles of carcinogens readily enter the lungs and aggravate respiratory allergies and lung cancer, and so they have the highest health damaging potential. (Catacchio). Works cited: Catacchio, Emily. Coal and Wood Combustion Smoke Linked to Lung Cancer. 2011. Web. 21 Apr. 2011. lt. Kumar, Raj, Nagar, Jitendra K., Raj, Neelima, Kumar, Pawan, Kushwah, Alka S., Meena, Mahesh, and Gaur, S.N. Impact of Domestic Air Pollution from Cooking Fuel on Respiratory Allergies in Children in India. ASIAN PACIFIC JOURNAL OF ALLERGY AND IMMUNOLOGY 26 (2008): 213-222. Print. Marten, Gerald G. Human Ecology – Basic Concepts for Sustainable Development. Earthscan Publications, 2001. Print. Indoor air pollution from cooking and heating with solid fuels. n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2011.