Rwanda is banning the use of charcoal for cooking in the capital, Kigali, and restricting supplies to the city from rural areas. The ban is aimed at protecting forests by clamping down on the illegal trade in charcoal. In future people will be encouraged to use gas. Rwanda follows Kenya and Uganda in taking action to discourage the use of charcoal, which is blamed for causing breathing problems for tens of thousands of people every year. The trade is also damaging forests and causing carbon emissions, which are blamed for global warming. Of the 1.4 million people living in Kigali, 85% rely on wood fuel for cooking. Rwanda’s government will encourage people to use gas, by offering it at affordable rates for poor people, who can also use a hire-purchase scheme to buy a gas cooker.