integrated recovery & low-carbon reconstruction - and update from pakistan
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DESCRIPTIONAn update of our / DFID's shelter and WASH projects in Northern Sindh. This time with a calculation of carbon dioxide emissions reductions (!) And all about building with lime..
How humanitarian response can address key vulnerabilities, innovate, showcase best Value for Money; and help people adapt to changing climates The Pakistan experience. Magnus Wolfe Murray
• Shelter “roofing” kit – with steel beam • Water filter: multiple years of use (vs. aquatabs, etc.) • Solar light x 1 @ £5.00 each
Link immediate relief to recovery – resilience continuum – wherever possible
Upon return, most families have used this roofing kit a “second time” to cover temporary shelters (that are NOT flood resistant). Now these same materials will be used a third time to cover a durable flood-resistant home.
A roofing kit by Local NGO HANDS being used as to build a quite permanent-looking shelter. The family built the walls themselves using vernacular technology (earthen bricks and mud plaster).
And used again for the 3rd time For a Flood-Resistant Shelter
Cost: Emergency: £60 / family Robust shelter: £130 Admin, etc.: £15 Total: £205 / family
The alternative: Emergency only: £60 / family – every year assuming climate change drives extreme weather events.
Comparison across humanitarian crises
Large tent, £130 - £180 range. Limited adaptability – can’t be used to reconstruct the home.
An overview of “conventional” response
£18 / Unit
Cheap but not very good (not much protection and dignity)
Cheaper tent (£100)
In contrast – a DFID / IOM designed family shelter
£60 / family – including a solar light
Whole families: better protection, enhanced dignity
The “Roofing Kit” idea
• £58 per unit
• Used as temporary shelter
• Later to build a roof
• Double the value of a tent
• And half the price
OK but what does it mean? Research: Protection for women? Economic savings? Potential for small businesses? Ref. Grameen Shahkti - Bangladesh
(better for keeping the house cool)
Many villages built these “chora” structures, which seem to cope with the heat much better (hot air rises and escapes through the small gaps in the thatch) while the steep roof ensures water flows away quickly in the rains.
“I am illiterate – therefore my daughter has a right to an education”
• Community development organisations (CBOs) Key for Social Capital and future development
• A well built structure, large enough to fit 50 people during this meeting.
• External temperature: 42
degrees • Internal temperature: 36
A quick introduction to Lime
• An ancient building material that could be the key to flood resistant housing in Pakistan
Hydraulic lime can be poured directly into the foundation trenches and used to reinforce the lower parts of walls, as shown.
Lime pits are built to allow lime rocks to slake (soak) properly before being used with local earth and sand to create flood-resistant plasters and renders. One person is elected by the community to run these pits and manage the process.
Walls after 4 – 5 days heavy rain, still in good condition
The ring-beam as designed by Heritage Foundation, installed by IOM’s partner NGO, SEWA. This is a lime-based concrete, using gravel bought in the local market; steel bolts are sunk into the walls to connect with the bamboo girders that will act as roof beams – making roof and wall an integrated structure. Note that a piece of split bamboo replaces the conventional use of reinforced iron bar.
Four pieces of bamboo are wired together to create a beam spanning the 4m room. Five such beams are used in total. The ring beam distributes their weight to avoid point loading. Note the massive 18” (50cm) walls which reinforced with lime based plaster should be virtually indestructible.
Yasmeen Lari, head of Heritage Foundation explaining the different components
A traditional Sindhi round-house, built on a
raised platform by Heritage Foundation as a
training model. Lime mud render for water-
Examples from DFID-funded work with IOM
and Heritage Foundation, Sindh, 2012
Target: 17,500 one room shelters
View from inside the chora structure. These young men have now learned how to build flood resistant structures like these – knowledge that could stay with them all their lives.
Local and Global Emissions – total
brick production in Pakistan
Dioxins : 425.88 nanogramme
CO2 Emissions : 37.4 million Tonnes
• 40m Pakistanis CO2 / year
• 9 million cars CO2 / year
Social impact – bricks in Pakistan
(Should we ignore this element?)
Child Labour Bonded Labour
Table 1: Conventional construction materials and practice
amount per house (KG)
quantity per house
CO2e (Kg) emissions per
Kg / brick
emissions per House
Target no Houses
Amount for 50,000 houses (CO2
Fired bricks (per brick figure - based on 0.23 CO2e per kg
n/a 5,500 0.55 3.03 50,000 151,250
Cement (Average CEM I Portland Cement 94% clinker)
600 600 0.95 0.57 50,000 28,500
Steel (Bar & rod 'Rest of World' average recycled content value)
54 54 1.95 0.11 50,000 5,265
Total Tonnes of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions 185,015
Table 2: Environmental Building Systems - as adopted by DFID & HANDS/IOM
Item (and items being replaced)
Required amount per house (KG)
quantity per house
CO2 (Kg) emission per
Kg / brick
CO2 (Tonnes) emission per
Target no Houses
Amount for 50,000
houses (CO2 Tonnes)
Fired bricks used for 20% of project only
5,500 0.55 3.025 10,000 12,100
Lime - in place of Cement (CO2e reduced by 70% as biomass based - see below)
50 0.234 0.0117 50,000 585
Steel: one beam instead of two procured
26 1.95 0.0507 50,000 2535
Difference and saving in tonnes of CO2: 169,795
Source: University of Bath, Embodied energy and carbon in Construction materials (2008) Available at: https://www.circularecology.com/nuqdjaidjajklasah.html
• Lower cost = £50m saved
• Allowed for much greater coverage
• Low cost = easier to replicate for poor people
• RED supporting evidence study for replication and publication of guide
• Main objective: flood resilience
• Environment impact: let’s not make it worse
• Low cost = replicable
• LIME: community based training AT SCALE
• 100,000 safe houses at less cost than the post-flood cash transfer programme. Value?
• Knowledge management (Humanitarian Library)
WASH in Emergency: Quick and Effective
But at what cost ?
Cost Environment Ecology Water
After 6 months in the
$90 / unit
Note: this picture is
similar latrines built.
Lesson: we can do
better than this!
Structure alternatives – Earth Bags?
In May 2012 HANDS (local NGO based in Sindh) –
built this earth-bag latrine to test the idea. Total
cost including slab and door: £33 / $50 / 5000 PKR
Alternative slab design. Liberia, 2003.
These cost $5 / unit (compared to $35 / unit
of plastic slabs). A viable alternative?
• DOME shaped slab –
no need for iron or
• Can be moved when
pit is full and re-used
• Lid section placed on
top prevents flies,
• Very sturdy to stand on
– no wobbles like the
The other system: Pour Flush & Septic Tank Latrines. Copes better with heavy
water use. U-bend in slab means less smell. More costly:
Cost per unit: $275 (25,000 Rps)
But there are problems…
Septic Tanks will fill up. Effective run-off design needed – and
overflow from septic
A common sight all over
A serious public health
problem has been
created, not resolved.
There are alternatives!
For example: constructed wetlands
A sectional view of a fixed dome biogas plant
Energy potential of
C/N Ratio Hydraulic Retention Time
Duck dropping 8 Human waste 55 days
Human Excreta 8 Cow/Buffalo Dung 45 days
Chicken dropping 10
Goat dung 12 Low C/N ratio Low gas production
Pig dung 18 (Need 3 times the plant size to produce
Sheep dung 19 same amt of biogas as cow dung)
Cow/Buffalo dung 24
Water Hyacinth 25 High HRT Less amount required
Elephant dung 43 for feeding into plant
Maize stalk 60
Rice straw 70 WASH solution – HYBRID PLANT
Wheat straw 90 Cow dung for biogas production
Saw dust 200 Human waste for sanitation
Already tried and tested in Kenya – proving that this treatment system works well at low cost. Funding for pilots and testing in this technology needed.
Typical scene in semi-urban towns around Pakistan Environmental engineering solutions needed Must be: low cost, low tech and environmentally beneficial
UNICEF promotes model latrines, which it supports with < 9,000 PKR. This model cost 5,500, for slab, cement, etc. Now the community have the design model.
The problem of standing water is prevalent across Sindh – posing a challenge to both WASH and agriculture / livelihood colleagues: which species are most appropriate here?
Adapting local spaces Very low cost (c. £10) Paid by owner Materials only now available on local market
UNICEF / NRSP provided 5,500 towards the cost of this latrine.
Note: INNOVATION for hand-washing
What difference does it make?
Latrine Cost $ /
# Units # people
Normal vs low-
90 vs. 30 3,250 65,000 $ 195,000
@ 1m people 90 vs 30 50,000 1,000,000 $ 3,000,000
families people 1 latrine per 20 persons
10,000 65,000 3,250
100,000 650,000 32,500
153,846 1,000,000 50,000
# units # units # units # units
cost / unit $ 10,000 32,500 50,000 3,250
90 3,250 292,500
Latrine 90 900,000 2,925,000 4500000 292,500
Latrine 2 30 300,000 975,000 1500000 97,500
difference 600,000 1,950,000 3,000,000 195,000
Outcomes of 2012 workshop: research priorities
Emergency sanitation Cost, design, ecology
Hygiene kits Evidence of impact
Emergency water Innovation and lower cost
Purr / aqua tabs Research efficacy / impact
ER sanitation Effective sewage treatment Innovations testing Environmental impact Biogas and wetlands
ER water Durable HH solutions
Local soap production Pilot on much larger scale
Groundwater quality Link with existing research Specific problem areas
Environmental impact of materials e.g. wood for latrines – at scale, what impact?
Quick compost making
Essential material for
establishing plant and
Source: IDEP permaculture field school, Aceh
Applied at a household
garden level these
building resilience for
communities facing malnutrition:
access to micro-nutrients
around the home
Garden in Jordan, used as part of short training courses.
Source: Permaculture Research Institute, Australia
Restoration of degraded, former agricultural
desert land in Jordan applying permaculture
design principles to create highly productive
In Sindh, with a similar climate, this
approach could be adopted, transforming
salinated or depleted land into a resource for
fresh food, fuel, produce for sale,
construction materials, employment.
This short film gives a good
introduction to the strategy and
Before and after, Jordan, 2001.
Source: Permaculture Research Institute, Australia
HANDS in Gotki – a good example of grey water run-off. Eucalyptus chosen – fast growing, very water hungry, high value timber
Bamboo or short rotation coppice to absorb waste waters The problem is the solution (creates an opportunity rather than a problem)
Slide 1: A normal village in Sindh: little shade in the extreme heat, no kitchen gardens, high malnutrition, poor health and hygiene, deforestation, denuded environment, etc.
Concept: DFID Illustration and artwork: UNHABITAT
Loess Plateau – China An example of reducing vulnerability
& increasing resilience (for 50m people)
Stabilise eroding landscapes – tree roots bind soil & produce food
Youtube: Hope in a Changing Climate, trailer = 5 mins.
After Tamera, Southern Portugal