Local innovation set for Kazakh expo



Bereng Mpaki

A SMOKELESS cooking stove is among several local renewable energy products that will be exhibited at next year’s international Expo in Kazakhstan.

The ACE 1 stove which was manufactured by African Clean Energy (Pty) Ltd was one of the products on display at a recent bazaar that was organised by the Ministry of Trade and Industry.

The bazaar was organised to raise funds to assist local crafters and artisans to cover the costs of attending the Astana Expo 2017 from 10 June to 10 September 2017.

101 countries have confirmed their participation.

The Expo will be held under the theme “Future Energy” with the aim of creating global debate among countries, non-governmental organisations, companies and the general public on the crucial question: “how do we ensure safe and sustainable access to energy for all while reducing CO2 emissions?”

The ACE 1 is a battery-powered stove that produces virtually no smoke and greatly reduces the amount of biomass fuel used by up to 70 percent.

Consequently, the stove is not only environmentally friendly but is also more amenable to good health. Research shows that over 4 000 000 die from inhaling smoke from indoor cooking.

Vice Director of African Clean Energy, Alice Troostwijk said the stove has a fan that blows the fire and completely burns the fuels so that it does not produce any smoke.

Ms Troostwijk said the stove was “efficient and uses a lot less fuel than on open fire does,” adding that it would enable those who used electricity, gas or paraffin for cooking to “save a lot of money”.

She said the stove was a welcome contribution to the fight against deforestation, soil erosion and global warming as it does not emit harmful gases that might cause health problems when inhaled.

Another local crafter ‘Mamphana Molotsi displayed beautiful organic neck, hand and ear ornamental pieces which she made from chicken by-products such as feather stalks and nails.

“My products are durable, do not lose their colour easily and do not rust. Also they are very light to touch and therefore can be worn throughout the day comfortably,” Ms Molotsi told this publication in an interview.

She said her products appealed to the fashion and health conscious young women. Currently a sole trader, her dream is to expand the business through training others to help increase her production and distribution.

Meanwhile, the Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Trade Fusi Notoane said the country’s participation at Kazakhstan was motivated by the need to find new international markets for local products.

“One of the major responsibilities of this ministry is to source markets for Lesotho products.

“So we have invited the producers (to the bazaar) to showcase their products to the dignitaries including the cabinet ministers, ambassadors, and representatives of international organisations in the country,” Mr Notoane said.

For her part, the ministry’s Public Relations Officer Lihaelo Nkaota said the Kazakhstan Expo would help local producers establish business networks with other producers from different countries.


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