The Triangle Research Initiative on Household Energy Transitions (TRI-HET) is a collaboration between 6 institutions based in the Research Triangle region of North Carolina.
EPA is an international leader in clean cookstove research and provides independent scientific data on cookstove emissions and energy efficiency to support the development of cleaner sustainable cooking technologies. Laboratory testing is being conducted at EPA’s cookstove test facility in Research Triangle Park, NC. The facility has state-of-the-art measurement capabilities to characterize emissions of gases and aerosols, including toxic air pollutants, greenhouse gases, and black carbon.
Studies are conducted using multiple stoves and fuels tested under varying conditions to simulate operating conditions found in the field. EPA also sponsors and supports field testing. Cookstove technologies are selected for testing based on specific criteria including: quantity in use, existing test data, potential market, need for baseline data, fuel availability, unique features, innovation, and partner needs. EPA also conducts studies to understand the health effects from exposure to emissions from cookstoves.
At RTI, we apply our technical knowledge, in-country experience, and collaboration skills to better understand and solve the critical health and environmental problems created by indoor use of biomass cookstoves in developing countries. Working with the scientific community and U.S. federal agencies, and investing our own funds, we are tackling the technical, economic, and societal challenges that make this issue so complex.
Over the past eight years, NIEHS has invested an estimated $9 million in research related to cookstoves and their health effects, primarily in community-based intervention studies in Guatemala, Ecuador, Nepal, Pakistan, Ghana, and the U.S. with study endpoints including lower respiratory infection (LRI) and tuberculosis in children, low birth weight, COPD, and other respiratory conditions in adult women. NIEHS seeks to expand the geographic reach of its studies and research training programs, as well as evaluate the effectiveness of new cookstove technologies.
Duke University’s Household Energy and Health Initiative brings together researchers from diverse fields, compiling a group of interdisciplinary scholars, students and professionals focused on air pollution, improved cookstoves, and clean fuels. The project highlights work by faculty and students across campus, as well as in partners in other academic and research institutions. The initiative was developed and is currently spearheaded by Professor Subhrendu Pattanayak, and is coordinated by Alisha Pinto, a Masters of Public Policy student at the Sanford School of the Public Policy.
The FUEL Lab provides developing country policy makers, non-governmental organizations, bilateral and multilateral donors, and the academic community with state-of-the-art knowledge on forest reliance in developing countries. Our focus is understanding the welfare implications of natural resource management and other sectoral policies that affect the access and use of forest resources. The FUEL lab has three thematic areas: energy poverty; forest governance; and forests and livelihoods. Members of the FUEL lab combine research design and methods from applied economics, institutional analysis, environmental science, and policy analysis to address problems surrounding these three research themes. The Lab is led by Dr. Pam Jagger who has a joint appointment in the Department of Public Policy and in the Curriculum for Ecology and the Environment at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Research at the Grieshop Lab focuses on understanding the sources, atmospheric evolution and impacts of aerosols (airborne particulate matter) and other air pollutants. Projects include work measuring in-use emissions from mobile (e.g. auto-rickshaws) and stationary (e.g. cookstoves) combustion sources and developing a more complete understanding of how they evolve once in the atmosphere. They are interested in developing simple modeling tools to quantify the impacts that air pollution emissions can have on personal exposure, urban air pollution and climate change. The lab is run by Dr. Andrew Grieshop, in the Department of Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineeringat North Carolina State University.