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Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Rising Cost of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG)

What is LPG? Well, simply put, it is Liquefied Petroleum Gas. The gas is encased in a metal cylinder or bottle. Here’s a picture of what it looks like.

Most urban households in the Philippines use the bottled LPG for cooking. Here’s a chart showing the percentage of urban households using which type of cooking fuel.

The photos above come from an interesting paper from REAP Canada and U.P. Los Baños. The paper is shown here in full with the appropriate credits to the authors. Why did the multi-fuel stove seem so attractive to us? Well, consider the chart below.

I was particularly appalled with the unabated price increases in 2004 (red line). The 2005 prices (blue line) were worse as they simply floated above those of the previous year’s prices. And what did the multi-fuel stove promise for its cooking fuel? Practically ANYTHING that burns! Yup, that meant “free” fuel for me.