Promoting environmental restoration in Mozambique
Some 400,000 residents of Mozambique will gain access to clean, locally produced cooking fuel following a commitment by Danish company Novozymes to the Business Call to Action (BCtA). This new venture will also save thousands of acres of forest in the Southeast African country.
Novozymes is pioneering CleanStar Mozambique an integrated food, alternative energy, and forest protection business focused on addressing the interconnected spiral of poverty, biodiversity loss, and the impact on primary health and well-being that exists across much of rural Africa.
In Mozambique, 80 percent of urban households rely on charcoal for cooking. In addition to the significant health and environmental consequences of using charcoal, its rising price also creates an additional financial burden.
By 2014, CleanStar Mozambique expects to provide farmers with an income-generating alternative to charcoal production, while restoring degraded soil and improving biodiversity. The company projects this effort will save 9,000 acres of forest annually, with 2,000 low-income farmers growing a range of trees and crops on their land.
This agroforestry system will allow farmers to eventually triple their incomes by selling crops they do not consume themselves to the company. Using enzyme technology from Novozymes, CleanStar's facility will process surplus cassava into 2 million liters (530,000 gallons) of ethanol-based cooking fuel annually, which will be sold in Mozambique's capital Maputo along with clean cookstoves.
The company will process legumes and grains into fortified flour, animal feed, cooking oil, and other packaged products to be sold domestically.
The company expects to sell 80,000 clean cookstoves tailored to local preferences and projects an annual reduction of 320,000 tons of greenhouse gas, as consumers replace charcoal fuel with ethanol.
According to the company, this safer, affordable cooking solution empowers working women from urban households to lead healthier, more productive lives.
Novozymes' CleanStar Mozambique vendors selling stoves using ethanol produced on surplus crops and teaching customers to how the stoves work.