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Low Carbon Construction Technologies

by deepak last modified 2010-12-06 17:14

Low carbon construction technologies Building Industry and Climate Change

The construction activity over the last century has led to the rapid depletion of natural resources and extensive energy consumption which is evident in land, water and air pollution today. This industry is estimated to be responsible for around 40 per cent of the total carbon emissions globally. Buildings are responsible for large shares of resource use and waste generation: approximately 40 per cent of materials use, 30 per cent of solid waste generation, and 20 per cent of water use.


The term ‘eco building technology’ refers to building processes and tools that are appropriate to the climatic and socio-economic conditions as well as the natural resources of an area. They contribute to sustainable development locally. Use of alternate materials significantly reduces the carbon footprint of the building.  They are also economically advantageous and can provide alternate employment at the village level.  It is estimated that by using these materials energy consumption for production of materials can be reduced by 25-33 per cent resulting in 11 per cent decrease in carbon dioxide emission. Eco building technologies also reduce the pressure on natural resources, by reducing both material and energy requirements.


WALLING: Vertical shaft brick kiln bricks, rat trap bond masonry, compressed stabilised soil blocks, sun dried earth blocks with terracotta face tile, fly ash bricks, hollow concrete blocks, bamboo reinforced panels, etc.
ROOFING: Micro-concrete roofing tiles, corrugated bamboo mats, ferro-cement channels, RCC plank and joists, arch panel roofs, funicular shells, bamboo trusses and purlins, conical tile centenary vaults, filler slabs, stabilised earthen vaults.

Training on the production and use of alternate materials is available through technical resource agencies such as the Building Materials and Technology Promotion Council, HUDCO, National Institute for Rural Development, select NGOs, and building centres all over India. Alternate materials can be produced locally through micro and small enterprises. Panchayati Raj Institutes can avail the services of these enterprises for use in social housing schemes and construction of schools, panchayat bhawans, aanganwadi’s for cost effective, locally appropriate and sustainable construction. 

The local and the global effects of climate change can be controlled in some measure if construction activity in rural as well as urban areas of the country is carried out using sustainable technologies that help in lowering the carbon emissions yet enhance economic growth. The smallest measures cumulatively can make a huge difference.

basin South Asia 2009 Designed and supported by OneWorld South Asia