Much of the fuel used for cooking and heating in Nepal is still fuelwood, as this is an inexpensive way to power stoves. Often this is gathered from unmanaged forests, therefore leading to deforestation. To tackle this problem the Foundation for Sustainable Technologies developed fuel briquettes from organic waste, to reduce the use of firewood.
The organisation trains Nepalis to make the briquettes for their own use and for sale, to give them a chance to generate their own independent income. The briquettes are easy to produce and the cheapest fuel available: They are made from sawdust, waste paper, cardboard, food scraps and agricultural waste and burn in a wide variety of stoves.
The briquettes are just one way in which Nepal is tackling its deforestation problems: Since 2000 the amount of trees in the country is growing again, thanks to managed forests and the increasing use of alternative energies.