Make cooking gas more affordable

Editor,

RE: “Safe cooking gas should be promoted countrywide” (The New Times, February 16).

I agree—changing the mindset is a key behavioural modification strategy to get more people to adopt gas usage. However, it is said the wallet is the most effective change agent.

A sack of charcoal—which can cater for cooking needs in a medium household of about 6-8 people—goes for two weeks and it costs about Rwf8,000. That is Rwf16,000 in a month.

A 12-kg gas cylinder goes for Rwf16,000 in the above household and would also last two weeks, so becoming Rwf32,000 in a month.

The startup cost to move to gas cylinder is usually expensive, a gas cooker one burner costs about Rwf 30,000 while a charcoal stove (imbabura) is about Rwf5,000. From the figures above, it’s a momentous task to get people to move to gas cooking especially the lower class—and ignoring this important section of society as a Government would fail its duty of catering for all economic segments.

Some interventions for this class are to subsidize low-cost and energy-efficient solutions through tax exemptions, etc. Every day I charcoal Lorries in Kigali overloaded with charcoal. This means that the demand is high, but how to manage it for me is one that leaves me scratching my head.

Kigali Girl