Seventy-five per cent of the houses in the country still use the traditional fuels like firewood and sun-baked cow dung for cooking food.
The traditional bio-fuels are also used at hotels, schools, army barracks and religious organisations as primary fuel for cooking purposes, according to a statistics.
This information was shared at a programme marking the first anniversary of the Nepal Clean Cooking Stove Network in Kathmandu Thursday.
Speakers at the programme said that use of traditional solid bio-fuels like this leads to indoor pollution which has a serious impact on the health of people, especially women, children and the elderly.
National Planning Commission Vice Chairman Prof Dr Govinda Raj Pokharel stressed on declaring the country as 'Zero Carbon Nepal' reducing the use of traditional fuel. He said the country could be declared as such by promoting organic agriculture, harnessing clean energy sources and hydroelectricity and pollution-free mountain tourism.
President of Nepal Clean Cooking Stove Network and officiating executive director of the Alternative Energy Promotion Centre, Ram Prasad Dhital, said 7500 people die annually due to indoor pollution by smoke and that the centre has so far installed over 800,000 improved cooking stoves, 300,000 biogas plants and 600 solar cookers with the assistance of different organisations for mitigating this problem.
NPC member Dr Swarnim Wagle underlined the need of concerted efforts from the government, the NGOs and the private sector for the practical implementation of the goal of rendering every house in the country clean in the coming three years making them indoor smoke free.
Secretary at the Ministry of Industry Krishna Gyawali said that clean energy has become the need not only of the rural area but also of the urban area due to the rising fuel cost.
Officiating Secretary at the Ministry of Environment, Mahendraman Gurung, spoke on the different adverse effects of the use of traditional forms of bio-fuel.
The government two years back announced the campaign of declaring the country indoor smoke-free by reaching the clean fuel technology at every house by 2017.
The Network was formed a year back at the initiatives of the centre and with the objective of assisting the government in making its campaign successful. Seventy-seven different organisations working in the promotion of clean energy are currently its members.