Utsil Naj - Guatemala

Families in Guatemala use clean cooking technology to improve their quality of life and fight climate change

Context

Central America It is one of the regions most affected by climate change in the world. Particularly Guatemala, since it is located in the “Dry Corridor”, a region vulnerable to the effects of climate change. This threatens the security and means of income of the communities; particularly those that depend on their crops as a source of income and food. A significant proportion of these rural communities still cook on open stoves with biomass.

As a result, families cut down more trees, use more firewood, and produce more smoke every time they need to cook. This generates a great impact on the environment and your health.

The Utsil Naj Guatemala Project seeks to address these challenges in an innovative way. The use of improved stoves reduces firewood consumption, reduces carbon emissions, and also expels gases
harmful outside the user's home. This reduces indoor air pollution, one of the leading causes of various heart and lung diseases in rural communities.

Programme Details

WHERE AND WHEN:

Guatemala, Central America - 2013

TECHNOLOGY:

Improved Stoves

PROGRAMME CERTIFICATION:

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):

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Project / Guatemala

The Utsil Naj Project in Guatemala seeks to address these challenges in an innovative way. Switching to the use of improved stoves reduces the use of firewood, reduces carbon emissions and expels toxic gases out of users' homes. This dramatically reduces air pollution inside homes.

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A healthy home for all

The Utsil Naj Project in Guatemala seeks to address these challenges in an innovative way. Switching to the use of improved stoves reduces the use of firewood, reduces carbon emissions and expels toxic gases out of users' homes. This dramatically reduces air pollution inside homes. Utsil Naj, which means “a healthy home for all” in Mayan, was established in 2012 and includes Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras. The challenge of having projects in different countries is that each place has its own characteristics.

Guatemala Project

Particularly in Guatemala, where an average of 24 kg of firewood is used per household per day, the participation of the project has been considerable for the prevention of forest degradation. This is largely due to the type of improved stove used: the installed models have an insulated combustion chamber, which increases their efficiency. Additionally, the campaigns have been successful in raising awareness, and capacity building activities have helped more community members adopt this technology. This is why it is crucial to ensure that Utsil Naj remains active, to ensure that the shift towards this technology is sustained.

Social impact

This approach has allowed Utsil Naj – Guatemala to remain sustainable and generate lasting benefits for almost 10 years. The project has made a low-carbon contribution grant, which corresponds to 177 thousand euros issued to different local partners for the sustainability of their initiatives. Utsil Naj – Guatemala currently covers six regions: Chiquimula, Chimaltenango, Guatemala, Quinche and Sacatepequéz. In addition to the environmental impacts generated by the project, Utsil Naj has been giving rise to profound social and economic impacts on each of the families. For example, women and children can invest the time they used to collect firewood in studies or other income-generating activities.

IMPACT SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE PROGRAM

This Project is certified by the prestigious Gold Standard. The positive impacts on our communities and our planet are carefully measured and reported as contributions to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), defined by the United Nations Organization.

Beneficiaries

“I have bad eyesight and this has helped me a lot. I can also ask my children for help because they don't have the risk of getting burned by some wood.”

Ligia Boj Saban

Santo Domingo Xenacoj - Sacatepequéz, Guatemala

“Before I used a lot of firewood, now I don't use as much, this firewood costs 450 per cent.” tarei as we say. But now I can save firewood thanks to God and his help.”

Maria Calicio Ajmac

Panimaquín Village - Chimaltenango, Guatemala