Document Type


Publication Date



Indoor air pollution and health hazards for women and child especially in the developing countries have been overlooked for decades. It happened because there was no specific indoor pollution standard and alternative energy solution to minimize the indoor gaseous emissions at the domestic end-use level of energy. Traditional biomass fuel is one of the major sources of energy in the developing countries. About 2.4 billion people rely on traditional biomass, mainly for cooking and heating as they have limited access to better alternative energy sources like Natural Gas or Electricity. In Bangladesh per capita energy consumption is only 8.83 GJ by the year 2000 and 4% of this energy was served by electricity, 30% by natural gas and rest is from biomass. The biomass fuels are mostly used in the rural areas where the supplies of commercial fuels are very low. Biomass fuels are usually collected from the forests, agricultural residues and the solid form of cow dung. Rapid increase of biomass fuels consumption in the rural areas through indigenous technology causes deforestation and vast amounts of human effort being diverted to fuel collection, besides worsening indoor environment by emitting hazardous pollutants. About 90% people in the rural Bangladesh, use traditional mud made stoves for cooking and other heating purpose. Those mud stoves act as a point source for continuous hydrocarbon pollution. Burning biomass in the traditional cook stoves produce number of other air pollutants including suspended particulate matters, carbon monoxide, and carcinogenic organic compounds in an order of higher magnitude because incomplete combustion and less efficient combustion chamber use. The most hazardous pollutant that emits from biomass fuel is Hydro Carbon (HC). Other secondary pollutants are NOx and CO2. HC, NOx and CO2 have direct health impact as in indoor gaseous pollutants especially on the women and children who use to inhale from the point source. In the rural areas the women usually spend 5 hours per day to collect and arrange the biomass fuel for cooking. At the same time every year more than 10,000 women and children in the rural areas suffer respiratory diseases that increase child mortality. The child mortality rates are increasing about 1.34% in rural areas by the indoor air pollution and now it is the second highest rate after water borne diseases. There is no standard has yet been fixed in Bangladesh for indoor pollution and health hazards as well there is no better alternative to minimize this health risk and pollution. This research aims to identify the average consumption of biomass fuel and the emission and concentration in the domestic level and health hazard especially in rural areas in Bangladesh.