Innovations

UN Sustainable Development Goal

3
Good Health and Well-Being

Business

Share

Top Comments

  • Consuelo Garcia-de-la-torre
    Consuelo Garcia-de-la-torre This initiative uses a UN experience in other countries and is adopted by the eco-zoom initiative to take it to rural Mexico. Very interesting and with excellent results in the country.
    January 19
  • Muyiwa Oni
    Muyiwa Oni EcoZoom is helping reduce CO2 emissions and health risks associated with cooking while improving efficiency and productivity in the household vis-a-vis cooking. It's a great story and one that can benefit the more than 3 billion people worldwide that cook...  more
    January 19
  • George Dionne
    George Dionne Thank you Consuelo and your student, Javier for seeking out and publishing another Sistema B certified business as a force for good.
    January 22

EcoZoom's Stoves

Date published: 19 Jan 2017
México     4 likes   3

Overview

EcoZoom Mexico is an innovative project created to help poor people in Mexico. The idea came in response to a need for clean stoves as championed by the "Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves", which was created by the UN. The project is focused on the creation of stoves that reduce fuel consumption, emissions, indoor air pollution, are safe to use, and can to cook two dishes and tortillas at the same time. The stoves are designed products that improve communities’ health, income, and environment. EcoZoom teach representatives how to use and install the stoves. This project is unique since it is teaching communities the importance of sustainability by reducing smoke emissions by up to 70% while reducing fuel usage by up to 60%.

 

innovation photo

Innovation

EcoZoom Mexico is a cooking stove which is cost effective and provides access to benefits, which include:

  • Family nourishment
  • Reduction in rate of deforestation
  • Family economy
  • Health of its users
  • Reduction in air pollution

It is targeted at low income families who depend on wood fueled cooking and its provider has the capability for the distribution and delivery of the product directly to its users or via local or federal government projects.

It is based on a pre-existing model but has been tailored to the needs of lower income Mexican families. The wood that EcoZoom uses for cooking is renewable wood and easy to acquire by the population. Also, EcoZoom products require less wood than other type of stoves.

EcoZoom is constantly seeking to innovate vis-a-vis their products and processes. Their products can accept other types of wood, including Mezquite and Red Encino. They are also exploring substitutes to wood fuel that offer cleaner energy. One area of exploration is the use of heat transferred through steam for cooking; this will reduce the risk and consumption of pollutant gases.

Overall impact

Before the arrival of EcoZoom to Mexico, the Mexican government provided conventional stoves to the lower-income communities. These stoves were more expensive than EcoZoom stoves. They needed gas, so it is very difficult for low-income families to use them since they do not have regular access to gas. Thus, the population used to cook on homemade stoves constructed of mud and clay. These people did not have the proper design to avoid the smoke and they inhale the burning of biomass produced during the kitchen.

Worldwide more than 3 billion people (2009, WHO) cook with wood open fire or wood stoves; resulting in more than 4.3 million deaths. In Mexico around 23 million people use fire to cook, leading to 19 thousand deaths annually. An estimated 20% of household income of the population is used to buy the wood totaling roughly 19 million metric tons of wood annually. EcoZoom stoves uses 70% less wood than other stoves on the market, including homemade stoves and and the conventional open fire cooking method.

Inspiration

EcoZoom Mexico was inspired by a concern for the well-being of Mexican families.

Smoke inhalation while cooking was leading to the loss of thousands of lives each year in Mexico; mainly mothers and their children. It was then that a Mexican entrepreneur decided to do something about it.

A similar but less efficient model already existed in United States and was adapted to better meet the needs of the Mexican family. The first step was to make a safer tool needed for one of the main human need: cooking. Meanwhile, it was decided that the process didn’t stop in there, the creator saw that it was an opportunity to make the stove more efficient; while at the same time, it could help in other ways.

The result was having a stove that was properly sealed, and which smoke emission was duly controlled to cause no harm in the cooker and its companions; also allowing to use substantially less fuel (wood).

Business benefit

The objective of the company is to help the government by reducing emissions from burning biomass  (reduce the amount of smoke and carbon monoxide people inhale while cooking, as well as the amount of money and time spent acquiring fuel), and to reduces the amount of necessary fuel by 50% and the emissions by 70% (Product: Zoom Dura). Through this approach, profitability is measured in terms of:

  • Client satisfaction

  • Eliminate and/or reduce the consumption of 19 million tons of wood a year

  • Company profitability

  • Community involvement

  • Environmental impact

  • Eliminate the dead of more than 18,000 people each year by harmful cookstove smoke

  • Reduce fuel consumption, emissions and indoor air pollution

The company has created better living conditions for the end users and their communities and was recognized as one of the Best for the World Overall Honorees in 2015.

EcoZoom is B Corp certified. They have received a GIIRS Rating from B Lab  ( a report designed to quantify and communicate a company’s impact to socially responsible investors or potential investors) and are leveraging that to attract potential investors and grow the company.

Social and environmental benefit

EcoZoom Mexico is committed to transforming the Mexican community by creating jobs and sustainable projects. Thanks to their commitment and the subsidies from the Mexican Government, EcoZoom is giving lower-income people in Mexico the opportunity to use sustainable stoves. "La MeraMera" is a stove that reduces fuel consumption, reduces emissions, reduces indoor air pollution, is safe to use and is be able to cook two dishes and tortillas at the same time. The stoves have a fireplace with which it extracts from the house 99% of the smoke.

The benefits to the environment and the society are considerable; in addition to the thousands of metric tons of CO2 that are spared from spreading into our air, EcoZoom products are bringing awareness to our communities and beyond, and showing people more sustainable lifestyles. EcoZoom Mexico is preventing diseases associated with the inhalation of wood like chronic bronchitis, lung cancer, and pulmonary fibrosis. The social and environmental benefits that EcoZoom is bringing to Mexico are reflected in the reduction of 70% in fuel wood consumption, and the reduction of emissions of more than 3.5 tons of coal per stove per year. Also, it is helping the economic growth by saving more than 10% on the family economy by not buying fuels for cooking.

Interview(s)

Reynaldo Villarreal Escamilla, EcoZoom in Mexico

Join The Conversation

3 comments
  • Consuelo Garcia-de-la-torre
    Consuelo Garcia-de-la-torre This initiative uses a UN experience in other countries and is adopted by the eco-zoom initiative to take it to rural Mexico. Very interesting and with excellent results in the country.
    January 19
  • Muyiwa Oni
    Muyiwa Oni EcoZoom is helping reduce CO2 emissions and health risks associated with cooking while improving efficiency and productivity in the household vis-a-vis cooking. It's a great story and one that can benefit the more than 3 billion people worldwide that cook...  more
    January 19
  • George Dionne
    George Dionne Thank you Consuelo and your student, Javier for seeking out and publishing another Sistema B certified business as a force for good.
    January 22