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Briquette Making Training

One of NETIF’s main objectives is conservation of the environment. Under this objective falls the need to help manage and maintain deforestation in our National Parks. The underlying problem is the cutting of trees for firewood by villagers. Villagers rely heavily on firewood taken from the National Parks to use for cooking food, heating and making items like Raski (local rice wine) which they sell. Some villagers even cut down trees to sell for firewood, thus supplementing their income.

The problem of deforestation contains two areas that need to be fixed to provide the villagers with an alternative to cutting down trees.

Firstly there is the need to provide a cheap and practical alternative energy to firewood
Secondly there is the need to provide the villagers with alternate means of income other than the production of Raski and the sale of fire wood.

NETIF has taken the incentive to train the villagers in the making of Briquettes. Briquettes are a practical, sustainable, cheap and easy to make fuel that has multi uses.

Benefits and potential of Briquettes

Made from local grasses which are unused in farming and more readily renewable than trees (grass is one of the fastest regenerating plants on the planet)
Each Briquette provides two hours of burning energy at a high heat
They can be used for cooking, lighting and heating
They do not use chemicals, are 100% organic and produce no smell or smoke thus eliminating health problems associated with smoke in closed kitchens
Briquettes can also be produced for sale purposes providing a source of income for villagers
Local hotels and tourism establishments can buy briquettes to use in outdoor BBQ’s, cooking and heating thus adding to their environmentally sustainable tourism practices
Each Briquette costs around 14 nrs to produce making a cost effective product
They are easy to make, all products are local and easily obtained
Special heating stoves are available to use Briquettes for heating and cooking purposes

So far NETIF has given numerous training sessions to villages throughout the project area including Nagarkot, Chisapani, Dhulikhel and Mulkharka. Each village has been given by NETIF three sets of the tools to produce the briquettes at the cost of 5000 nrs each. Now that the training has been given and the villagers have the knowhow and tools to make the briquettes, NETIF has also employed a liaison officer who will act on our behalf. The job of the liaison office, who is an expert in the field of Briquette making is to visit the villagers and help them with the production, give advice and help solve problems associated with the making and using of Briquettes. NETIF is hoping to give the villagers the motivation to make the change from firewood by building this support network which NETIF’s sees as one of the most important parts to the ongoing success of the project.

NETIF’s hope is that the villagers in the project area will produce Briquettes for use themselves and also as marketable sale item to provide them with income. The project has the greatest value in that NETIF hopes it will ultimately eliminate the villager’s dependence on firewood and put an end to tree cutting in the National Park and buffer zones. Deforestation has a solution and at NETIF we think Briquette production is a powerful step in the right direction to a cleaner greener future.


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