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North-West University (2021)

Quantifying the use of firewood as a source of energy in North West Province : a case study for Matlwang

Lavhelani, Funanani Grace

Titre : Quantifying the use of firewood as a source of energy in North West Province : a case study for Matlwang

Auteur : Lavhelani, Funanani Grace

Université de soutenance : North-West University

Grade : Master of Science in Environmental Sciences 2021

Résumé partiel
The aim of the current study was to quantify the use of firewood as a source of energy in Matlwang, a small township in the North West Province of South Africa. A mixed method was used to collect data for the study. The rationale for adopting it was to garner unique perspectives on the dynamics of solid-fuel usage as well as emissions produced from a predominantly wood-burning township. Methods for sourcing the required data included face-to-face interviews with one member from each of 50 households, structured questionnaires, and observations. The questionnaires were administered to fifty households that were selected randomly in the township. In addition to the interviews and questionnaires, during the summer and winter of 2017, twenty households were issued scales to weigh the firewood they burnt daily. These data provided the consumption of firewood in the township as well as formed the basis for calculations of emissions during summer and winter. The total household and township emissions estimates for CO2, CO, NO and CH4 have been calculated. Of the households in the township, 86 % used firewood for cooking and heating. The remaining 14 % used electricity, gas (LPG) or paraffin. The households use firewood in both seasons as their only source of primary energy. The results of this study show that the unemployment rate, poverty, culture, age, lack of access to electricity and readily available firewood are reasons the households continue to use firewood as a source of energy. About 64 % of households in the township stated that they used firewood because of poverty. Most households in the township reported that they did not have jobs, which meant they could only afford to collect or buy firewood because it is cheaper than purchasing electricity, paraffin, and LPG. The majority of households advised that collecting firewood is convenient since it does not require money for either the wood or transportation to get it back to the house. Households that are unable to collect their own wood purchase the wood from vendors who collect it. A “load” of wood (namely, one “donkey cart” of approximately 50 kg) is sold to households for between ZAR 120 and ZAR200, depending on the type/quality of wood purchased. The households indicated that they had three preferred sites from which they collected firewood, namely, Kgapamadi, Kgabaesetswe and Tshopane hills. Kgapamadi was the preferred site for the households and vendors interviewed.

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Page publiée le 7 mai 2022