The Charcoal Project is hard at work fundraising for the first phase of their Biomass Energy Efficiency Project (BEEP) in rural Uganda. The project will establish a clean combustion technologies and renewable fuels program for a local partner, the Rubaare Education Foundation (REF). REF is comprised of six schools — four primaries, a high school, and a vocational school — that provides education, room, and board to about 1,600 very poor or orphaned children living in remote Uganda.

Click here to read an interview with Henry Twinemasiko, REF’s inspiring schoolmaster.

One of Henry’s chief challenges is reducing the school’s consumption of woodfuel for cooking, which he must purchase at an increasingly dear price since the fuel is growing more and more scarce.

And this is where The Charcoal Project steps in with their BEEP project. Their goal is to bring energy efficiency and renewable fuels to the school’s energy supply chain in order to reduce the portion of the budget dedicated to woodfuel acquisition and transport.

By introducing cookstoves that cut fuel consumption in half, renewable fuels made from discarded agricultural waste, and planting trees for reforestation and fuel, the hope is that in the processes of reducing REF’s energy bill, BEEP also create a renewable fuels industry in the community. Phase 2 aims to roll out improved cookstoves to the 20,000 families in the community and thus help them reduce their home energy bills. In the process, REF is expected to generate an income from the sale of its excess briquettes manufacturing.

The Charcoal Project's ultimate goal is to turn BEEP in Rubaare into a replicable model for the rest of sub-Saharan Africa where an increasing number of communities are facing financial, time, public health, and environmental hardship due to the unsustainable demand for woodfuel and charcoal. These cookstoves could be 50 to 80% more efficient.

To help The Charcoal Project and Henry make BEEP a reality, you can visit Global Giving and make a donation to the Rubaare project.

<i>By Jean Kim Chaix from The Charcoal Project

For more information visit