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Forests 2018, 9(7), 429; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9070429

Consumption Rates and Use Patterns of Firewood and Charcoal in Urban and Rural Communities in Yedashe Township, Myanmar

1
Graduate School of Bioresource and Bioenvironmental Sciences, Kyushu University, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
2
Forest Department, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation, Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar
3
Faculty of Agriculture, Kyushu University, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
4
Institute of Decision Science for a Sustainable Society, Kyushu University, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan
5
Faculty of Agriculture, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima 890-8580, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 June 2018 / Revised: 13 July 2018 / Accepted: 16 July 2018 / Published: 17 July 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Forest Economics and Human Dimensions)
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Abstract

There is concern over the environmental impact of charcoal use for cooking in urban areas; however, studies have mainly been limited to Africa and South Asia. This investigation aimed to evaluate woodfuel consumption rates and patterns in an urban area in Yedashe Township, Myanmar and compared them with results from a rural area in the same township. From interviews with 66 urban households, it was evident that firewood and charcoal consumption rates in the urban area were about one-third and one-fourth, respectively, of those in the rural area. These low consumption rates were because of multiple-fuel use (mainly woodfuel and electricity) in the urban area in contrast to single-fuel use in the rural area. We estimated the forest area required to meet woodfuel demand of the whole township to be 3738 ha; that could decrease by almost 40% (1592 ha) if the single-fuel use in the rural area switched to the multiple-fuel methods used in the urban area. This study confirms that urbanization with an “energy stack” in multiple-fuel use, rather than an “energy ladder” from firewood to charcoal, could largely reduce the environmental impact on forests. View Full-Text
Keywords: charcoal; firewood; forest; energy transition; urbanization charcoal; firewood; forest; energy transition; urbanization
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Win, Z.C.; Mizoue, N.; Ota, T.; Kajisa, T.; Yoshida, S. Consumption Rates and Use Patterns of Firewood and Charcoal in Urban and Rural Communities in Yedashe Township, Myanmar. Forests 2018, 9, 429.

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