Sunday, January 1, 2012

Homes Resistant to Bullets and Earthquakes

This fascinating piece is compliments of  Who, as usual, shares with such generosity.  What caught my eye and my head was that these structures are resistant to both bullets and earthquakes!

© Andreas Froese/ECOTEC
Thousands of pieces of trash that would otherwise be clogging waterways and landfills in Nigeria have been turned into sturdy, and surprisingly attractive, construction materials in the village of Yelwa, where the country's first plastic-bottle house is drawing curious visitors and plenty of press.
"Hundreds of people -- including government officials and traditional leaders -- have been coming to see how the [house's] walls are built in the round architectural shape popular in northern Nigeria.
Stronger Than Conventional Construction
The bottles are actually filled with dry soil or construction waste, not sand (an "unnecessary expense"), John Haley of ECOTEC, the firm that is training local masons in the technique, told in an email. They are then laid in rows like bricks and bound together with mud, producing a sturdy, well-insulated, and inexpensive three-room structure that is resistant to both bullets and earthquakes.

© Andreas Froese/ECOTEC
"In Nigeria millions of plastic bottles are dumped into waterways and landfill each year causing pollution, erosion, irrigation blockages, and health problems. Bottle houses take this dangerous waste out of the environment and make it useful," the environmental blog Eco Nigeria wrote earlier this year as the construction was in progress.


This is a short post....just a question.  Please, what’s the key detail lacking from all of these subsidies purported to ensure a “safe and secure” energy future?  
No matter how you define that nebulous term, fossil fuel subsidies are about increasing supply, not encouraging efficiency or reducing the external costs to human health and the environment.