Consumption rates and use patterns of firewood and charcoal in urban and rural communities in Yedashe Township, Myanmar

Zar Chi Win, Nobuya Mizoue, Tetsuji Ota, Tsuyoshi Kajisa, Shigejiro Yoshida

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Abstract

There is concern over the environmental impact of charcoal use for cooking in urban areas; however, studies have mainly been limited to Africa and South Asia. This investigation aimed to evaluate woodfuel consumption rates and patterns in an urban area in Yedashe Township, Myanmar and compared them with results from a rural area in the same township. From interviews with 66 urban households, it was evident that firewood and charcoal consumption rates in the urban areawere about one-third and one-fourth, respectively, of those in the rural area. These lowconsumption rates were because of multiple-fuel use (mainly woodfuel and electricity) in the urban area in contrast to single-fuel use in the rural area. We estimated the forest area required to meet woodfuel demand of the whole township to be 3738 ha; that could decrease by almost 40% (1592 ha) if the single-fuel use in the rural area switched to the multiple-fuel methods used in the urban area. This study confirms that urbanization with an "energy stack" in multiple-fuel use, rather than an "energy ladder" from firewood to charcoal, could largely reduce the environmental impact on forests.

Original languageEnglish
Article number429
JournalForests
Volume9
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 17 2018

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Forestry

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