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HOUSEHOLD ENERGY, INDOOR AIR POLLUTION AND HEALTH IMPACTS: STATUS REPORT FOR NEPAL
Jiwan Acharya Winrock International Nepal

ABSTRACT

Winrock International Nepal has prepared a status report for Nepal on household energy, indoor air pollution and health impacts which documents the seriousness of the problem and the activities being carried out in health and the household energy sector to address these concerns. Literature review, updated information collection from different organizations and detail analysis based on the collected information was done to prepare this status report. This paper attempts to highlight the seriousness of the problem, key actors and programs in health and household energy sector, lessons learned & gaps and areas for future intervention from the status report. Although it poses one of the four greatest risks for death and disease, especially for children and women, indoor smoke from burning solid fuels receives scant attention from policy makers and the general public in Nepal. Sitting at the bottom of the energy ladder, the most common fuels used in rural households (more than 80%) are firewood for cooking and heating and kerosene for lighting. Lack of ventilation results in very poor indoor air quality, routinely resulting in particulate matter (PM10) concentrations of up to 5,000 micrograms per cubic meter, which exceed the US Environmental Protection Agency standards for ambient air by a factor of 100! This paper will help to create awareness among participants on the importance of indoor air pollution and will contribute to identify appropriate mechanisms and to formulate recommendations on appropriate technical solutions to reduce the exposure to indoor air pollution not only for Nepal but also for the whole region.

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