I was listening to CBC One last night when they aired a segment on the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, a movement to bring "life-saving clean cookstoves for the nearly 3 billion people who lack healthy and efficient cooking solutions." Hilary Clinton is a promoter of the Alliance and Julia Roberts recently became an ambassador. Clinton was interviewed on the program.
The Alliance recognizes that the unclean kitchen cooking which takes place in so many third world countries endangers the lives of a home's occupants by exposing them to harmful cookstove smoke. Such exposure, according to the Alliance, causes 1.9 million premature deaths annually, primarily among women and young children. The smoke is blamed for a wide range of illnesses, including pneumonia, emphysema, cataracts, lung cancer, bronchitis, cardiovascular disease and low birth weight.
This is not to mention the dangers placed on those doing the cooking when foraging for fuel in refugee camp settings and the harmful greenhouse gases produced by inefficient, biomass cooking.
Reading/Hearing about the Alliance puts my recent stovetop element issue into perspective. I find myself grateful for the working stove that I do have and thankful that my cooking does not put me or my family in jeopardy.