Patterns of Household Cooking Energy and Associated Factors: Experience from Kilimanjaro Region, Tanzania

Authors

  • Fatihiya Ally Massawe Sokoine University of Agriculture
  • Kenneth M. K. Bengesi Development Studies Institute Sokoine University of Agriculture
  • Amin E Kweka Faculty of Forestry and Nature Conservation Sokoine University of Agriculture

Keywords:

biomass, energy mix, energy use pattern, transition fuel, ICS, partial switching

Abstract

Traditional biomass is a major source of cooking and heating energy in Tanzania. Although Tanzanian energy policy insists on the need to diversify energy sources, the level of diversification at a household level is not well known. This study identified energy use patterns and their associated factors in Kilimanjaro Region of Tanzania. Specifically, the study identified the types of cooking fuels and stoves available and used by households, as well as how and why households combined various cooking fuels. The household survey was conducted in 294 randomly selected households in the districts of Rombo and Hai. We found that although biomass is becoming scarce, it is still a major source of cooking energy, combined with the traditional cooking stove. Only 10.2% of the households reported full-time use of improved biomass cookstoves (ICS). The rest combined ICS with the traditional stove, threatening the sustainability of the biomass resource. It was found that 15% of ICS used by households were abandoned due to various technical flaws. Factors like woodlot ownership, kitchen location, electric grid connection, quality of living, and sources of firewood were associated with partial switching of households to either transition fuels or cleaner fuels. We conclude that energy use patterns in this region demonstrate a partial switching of fuel source, because some households use transition fuels or cleaner fuels combined with firewood. Fuel diversification focused more on cooking with biomass than moving to cleaner fuels. This implies that biomass will continue to be a major source of cooking fuels for Tanzanian households and, hence, ICS remains the best solution. For ICS to have a broad impact and achieve more widespread use, it is necessary to address some technical problems associated with ICS. The government of Tanzania should revisit the cost of alternative energy sources like LPG to improve their affordability for the masses.

Author Biographies

Fatihiya Ally Massawe, Sokoine University of Agriculture

Lecturer Development Studies Institute

Kenneth M. K. Bengesi, Development Studies Institute Sokoine University of Agriculture

Lecturer

Amin E Kweka, Faculty of Forestry and Nature Conservation Sokoine University of Agriculture

Associate Professor

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Published

2015-07-19

Issue

Section

Research Articles