Africa’s Charcoal Economy Is Cooking. The Trees Are Paying.

Charcoal — cleaner and easier to use than firewood, cheaper and more readily available than gas or electricity — has become one of the biggest engines of Africa’s informal economy. But it has also become one of the greatest threats to its environment.


The charcoal business, along with the expanding use of land for farming, is expected to increase deforestation and worsen the effects of climate change on a continent poorly equipped to adapt to it.

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