Here I am spilling my heart out about something that I was eagerly waiting to talk about. This prompt today said to me “Ankita this is your chance to speak up”. I am here to talk about a social and environmental issue that is growing at a lightning speed and won’t stop until and unless we take the initiative. I am going to tell you some facts about sustainability and how local materials can help us have a more ecologically balanced and less harmful construction.
It is a big deal and we need a revolution to save our Earth, but why not we do our part and take a step ahead to a healthier and efficient living. Since the time of Industrial Revolution (which has helped humans progress at a great pace, and I truly appreciate it) we have been constantly attacking nature and natural resources. This in long term has resulted into degrading environment and numerous issues that are becoming severe with every passing day.
How are local materials helpful with sustainability? How does any material used in construction matter with environmental issues? Is it really worth the hassle? etc. etc. I am going to discuss about all those questions and give you an insight about what are we really giving up when we are importing all the construction materials.
Our vernacular architecture is blessed with great beauty and functionality. The sole reason for the same is that our ancestors built houses in co-ordination with the environmental conditions. if you notice, the ancient houses in Rajasthan are so different than those in Kerela, Maharashtra, Manipur, etc. basically every state has it’s unique vernacular architectural style which is directly related to the weather conditions in that area. The style of housing is based on the challenges of that area and the material naturally available in that area.
Coming to the present condition, modern architecture across the whole nature is the exact same. The basic materials used are the same, no matter what location you are in, does that feel right to you? The fact is, sticking to local materials and traditional ways of construction is immensely challenging for multiple-storey buildings, which is fine. But when it comes to even bungalows and row houses we are going for the same. The fact is, we are too comfortable with the easy and fast modes of construction, which can be a long term problem.
We are the ones complaining about how hot summers are, but we ourselves have built those concrete houses that absolutely do nothing to regulate the temperature. Now, we don’t pay much attention to the orientation of the house, we are just focused to building on every inch of land available. Then we pay huge ass bills for air conditioning, lighting and additional ventilation. All of that results in waste of natural resources and also burn a hole in our pockets with those electricity bills.
Use of natural materials is not only economical but also environmentally favorable, which is also why we experience better natural conditions when we are at our ancestral homes. Swapping all the new materials with the local materials is next to impossible now, but we can still opt for some of those in the construction, go towards making your building a ‘Green Building, and lead a sustainable life. With that you wont be doing a favor to the nature or anybody else, you would be making your own life peaceful and healthier.
If you are thinking of building a bungalow yourself, do some research about the local materials in construction and sustainable options, they are the best option to go for. They are beautiful, economical and environmentally favorable. Let’s take out small step ahead towards better living.
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