Entries by Kim Still

Black and White Smoke

Biomass: Captured sunlight Wood burning cookstoves make smoke and many different gases that change climate. Carbon dioxide (CO2) is absorbed when the plant grows and the same amount of carbon dioxide can be released when that biomass is burned. So emissions of CO2 can be zero with no effect on global warming (carbon neutral) if […]

Short-lived Climate Forcers and Climate Change

The emissions that change climate include various gases and the colors of smoke. If the wood used for cooking is 100% renewably harvested, the emissions of CO2 can be carbon neutral. Why? CO2 is absorbed when the plant grows and the same amount of CO2 can be released when biomass is burned.  100% renewability can […]

Lab Tests: Cooking and Heating Stoves

Unfortunately, although introductions to lab tests warn that results do not predict actual performance, the recent use of lab data to earn carbon credits has made an unfortunate error more commonplace. For decades, introductions to lab tests have warned that only field-testing can determine actual efficiency, emissions, effectiveness, market validity, etc. The World Health Organization […]

Over the Moon

A couple of weeks ago, Claudia Truesdell and Shane Washburn from Google’s X – The Moonshot Factory visited us for the day. We made lunch on an earthen Rocket stove and on a metal pot skirt stove with Jet-Flame while doing a field test that generated some numbers. Google’s X was interested in what we […]

Turn Down Ratio: Cooking and Heating Stoves

The successful stove delivers the needed amount of heat to perform a task. In Haiti, our little charcoal stove could not bring the big pots of rice and beans to boil although the thermal efficiency at low power (simmering) was above 40%. In the same way, a tight, well-insulated house requires a low amount of […]

Dr. Tom Reed: “Smoking Backwards”

Dr. Tom Reed: “Smoking Backwards” Our beautiful friend Tom Reed (1926-2018) at a Winter Stove Camp ONE: Starting in 1985, Tom invented the natural and forced draft Top Lit Up Draft stoves (TLUD). He would demonstrate one of the clean burning principles at Stove Camps by lighting the tip of a cigarette and then sucking […]

Rocket Bread Ovens

I ran across this old video when exploring Rocket stoves on YouTube. It is great to have both peer reviewed journal articles and places like YouTube. I hope that our publications library at aprovecho.org includes, perhaps even combines, helpful information from both academia and the field. We baked with a high mass bread oven for […]

Clean Burning of Biomass

Scotland has banned the use of climate polluting home heating systems such as oil and gas boilers, and wood burning stoves (except in cases of need) in new construction. Heating homes creates one fifth of Scotland’s CO2e. The plan is to switch to electric heat pumps, hydrogen and tighter, better-insulated homes in an effort to achieve […]


Boman reports that temperatures above 850°C, in a 5kW combustion zone combined with air rich and well-mixed conditions for 0.5 seconds in the post combustion zone, resulted in an almost complete depletion of particulate matter (Boman et al., 2005). How can we achieve 850°C in a combustion chamber?  Yellow flames are around 1,100°C. but:  Elevating […]

Ice Storm 2024!

On January 14, ARC staff experienced a catastrophe when ice brought down about one third of the trees in our valley and we had no electrical power for seven days. Depending on the grid for heat and light is great when everything works. However, when the lights go out, a warm house becomes really important. […]