Clean-burning stove

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A clean-burning stove is a stove with reduced toxic emissions. The term commonly refers to wood-burning stoves for domestic heating, although it is also applied to cooking stoves. It is distinct from a clean-burning-fuel stove, which typically burns clean fuels such as ethanol, biogas, LPG, or kerosene.[1] Studies into clean-burning stoves have shown that they reduce the emissions of dangerous particulates and carbon monoxide significantly, use less fuel than regular stoves, and result in fewer burn injuries. However, the emissions they produce are still much greater than the safe limits, and they do not appear to be effective at reducing illnesses such as pneumonia induced by breathing polluted air, which may have many sources.[2][3][4]


Such stoves are commonly used for domestic heating, although they can also be used for cooking.[5][6] They have been proposed for introduction to developing countries[6][7][8] in order to improve air quality.[5] In addition to their practical use, they can be considered to have an aesthetic aspect by "add[ing] some charm to the décor".[9]


A research summary of the development of such stoves was published in 1982 by Flow Research Inc.[10] Stoves introduced in the 1980s burnt wood pellets rather than logs.[11] By 1986, a directory was available listing 75 such stoves which had satisfied emission testing.[12]


Clean-burning stoves can be catalytic (using catalytic converters) or noncatalytic.[12] The noncatalytic designs recirculate smoke to achieve fuller combustion.[13]

Once the stove is warmed to within operating temperatures, it produces no visible smoke,[14] emitting mostly water and carbon dioxide.[15] Non-catalytic stoves have higher emissions than the new catalytic stoves do when the latter are operated correctly (as of 2003).[13]

A conventional stove in 1984 emitted particulates amounting to approximately 20g/kg (0.3oz/lb).[11] Research by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was reported in 1986 to show that conditions such as asthma, bronchitis and emphysema may be aggravated by the use of conventional stoves.[12]


The EPA was reported as announcing plans in 1987 to encourage manufacturers to design stoves with reduced emissions.[12] Clean-burning stoves are authorised for use in smoke control areas in some countries by organisations such as the EPA.[13][14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Pokhrel, Amod K; Smith,Kirk R; Khalakdina, Asheena; Deuja, Amar; Bates, Michael N (June 2005). "Case–control study of indoor cooking smoke exposure and cataract in Nepal and India". International Journal of Epidemiology. 34 (3): 702–708. doi:10.1093/ije/dyi015. 
  2. ^ Victoria Gill (7 December 2016). "Do smoke-free stoves really save lives?". BBC News. Retrieved 7 December 2016. 
  3. ^ Kevin Mortimer; et al. (6 December 2016). "A cleaner burning biomass-fuelled cookstove intervention to prevent pneumonia in children under 5 years old in rural Malawi (the Cooking and Pneumonia Study): a cluster randomised controlled trial". The Lancet. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(16)32507-7. 
  4. ^ James Tielsch; et al. (8 April 2016). "Effect of an improved biomass stove on acute lower respiratory infections in young children in rural Nepal: a cluster-randomised, step-wedge trial". The Lancet. doi:10.1016/S2214-109X(16)30024-9. 
  5. ^ a b Unep Year Book 2011: Emerging Issues in Our Global Environment. UNEP/Earthprint. 1 February 2011. p. 8. ISBN 978-92-807-3101-9. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "From Suffering to Solutions: UNF-GACC Documentary "BLACK INSIDE: Three Women’s Voices" Highlights Clean Cookstoves as Dramatic Global Health Solution for Women". PR Web. 30 January 2013. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  7. ^ Parikh, Jyoti; Smith, Kirk; Laxmi, Vijay (1999). "Indoor Air Pollution: A Reflection on Gender Bias". Economic and Political Weekly. 34 (9): 539–544. 
  8. ^ Humber, Yuriy (5 February 2013). "Mongolia $1.25/Day Labor Amid $4K Purses Stirs Discontent". Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  9. ^ Brown, Austin (4 February 2013). "It’s Not Too Late to Lower Your Heating Bill". Living Green magazine. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  10. ^ Engineering development of a clean burning residential wood stove, 1 April 1982
  11. ^ a b Bonnier Corporation (December 1984). Popular Science. Bonnier Corporation. pp. 90–92. ISSN 0161-7370. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  12. ^ a b c d Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc. (December 1986). Kiplinger's Personal Finance. Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc. p. 18. ISSN 1528-9729. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  13. ^ a b c Greg Pahl (1 September 2003). Natural Home Heating: The Complete Guide to Renewable Energy Options. Chelsea Green Publishing. pp. 103–104. ISBN 978-1-60358-156-1. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  14. ^ a b Matthew Stein (31 August 2008). When Technology Fails: A Manual for Self-Reliance, Sustainability, and Surviving the Long Emergency. Chelsea Green Publishing. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-60358-095-3. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  15. ^ Bonnier Corporation (October 1976). Popular Science. Bonnier Corporation. pp. 104–107. ISSN 0161-7370. Retrieved 22 February 2013.