Most recently, EBLI endeavored to build and test a clean energy stove for at home cooking. Presently, nearly all Tanzanians cook by using charcoal, which can be hazardous both to the environment and one's health. To avoid these ills, EBLI Executive Director, Bernard Makachia, and Head of Economic Empowerment and Maryknoll Lay Missioner, Michael Leen, partnered with Davide Coslovich, an Italian man currently living in Mwanza, Tanzania, to produce the Elsa Stove.
The Elsa Stove is a cooking stove that uses biomass, often in the forms of pellets, to produce gas for cooking and heating water. It is also a biochar producing stove, meaning that after the cooking process is complete, the residue or char can be used like a fertilizer to improve certain types of soil to increase crop productivity.
On 6 August 2016, Bernard, Michael and Davide visited the workshop of Dominic, a Tanzanian man who is currently making traditional charcoal stoves out of metal instead of clay. Leveraging Davide's engineering plans of the Elsa Stove, the team worked together to build the first known prototype of this stove in the Mwanza Region and possibly Tanzania. The construction process was backed by tremendous teamwork and dedication to high quality results. While the prototype is completed, testing remains ongoing to determine the viability of this stove on a larger scale. You can see photos of the manufacturing process and the final output in the gallery below.