Building sustainable settlements in Chimoio, Mozambique : the sustainability of using unfired adobe bricks to construct shelter

Savaio, Dieter Santos (2010-03)

Thesis ((MPhil (Sustainable Development Planning and Management))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Adequate shelter for the majority of the Mozambican population is still not a reality. Conventional building materials are not affordable for the poor and the governmental policies do not put much focus on the issue of housing. Also, the consideration of environmental issues in the construction industry is becoming relevant concerning the process of sustainability promotion. In most instances, communities in Mozambique have been using local alternative materials to build their houses and unfired adobe brick is one of these materials. Compared to conventional materials, unfired adobe brick is relatively cheaper and has low negative environmental impacts. This study analysed the use of this material in Mozambique from a sustainability viewpoint to find out whether there were opportunities to construct sustainable housing for local communities. To gather information regarding socio-economic, environmental and technical dimensions of the use of unfired adobe brick, the main research strategy privileged the use of a qualitative approach where the data collection methods involved interviews, focus group discussions, observation and direct involvement of the researcher in practical work. Findings indicate that low costs related to the use of unfired adobe brick address the problem of affordability for the majority of local people. Local availability of suitable soils, minimal processing, use of renewable sources of energy for processing the material and recyclability/reusability all indicate that this material has very little environmental impact. Identified stresses (moisture) affecting unfired adobe structures can be avoided through low-impact methods of earth stabilization and specific design measures. It is concluded that unfired adobe brick has the potential to contribute to the provision of sustainable housing in Mozambique. In order for this to happen, there needs to be: More research on construction methods applicable to the Mozambican context; The introduction of construction codes related to adobe construction; Training of local communities in adobe construction; The creation of housing policies; and Investigation into the opportunities offered by unfired adobe brick concerning sustainability.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Ordentlike behuising vir die meerderhede van die mense van Mosambiek is nog steeds nie ʼn werklikheid nie. Die meeste mense van Mosambiek kan nie gewone bou materiale bekostig en die staat beleide fokus baie min op die verskafing van behuising of pogings om bou materiale meer toegangklik te maak. Toegang tot bou materiale is een probleem maar bekommernis oor omgewings probleme is ook iets wat meer en meer in ag geneem moet word, spesifiek in terme van die bou industrie. Volhoubarheid is ook iets wat ʼn grote rol speel in ontwikkelings beluister en kan ook ander opsies vir arme gemeenskappe ontlok. Plaaslike gemeenskappe van Mosambiek het vir ʼn lang tyd, alternatiewe produkte gebruik om hul huise te bou, een van die is modder adobe bakstene. In vergelyking met konvensionele materiale is die modder bakstene goedkoper en het a baie kleiner omgewings impak. Die projek bestudeer die gebruik van die modder adobe baksteen in Mosambiek van ʼn volhoubaarheid oogpunt en ondersoek of dit geleenthede skep in terme van volhoubare behuising vir plaaslike gemeenskappe. Die navorsing het verskillende metode behels, die van persoonlike onderhoude, groep onderhoude, observasie en praktiese gebou van ʼn huis met die modder adobe bakstene. Die navorsing het bewys dat die gebruik van die adobe bakstene wel die probleem van toegang en hoe bou koste vir die arm plaaslike gemeenskap oplos. Plaaslike omstandighede werk ook om die vrag van volhoubaarheid op te los omdat die materiale en kennis plaaslik beskikbaar is. Die navorsing bewys ook dat opleiding en ʼn samestelling van die plaaslike kennis kan ook lui tot ʼn toename van die gebruik van die modder adobe baksteen tektologie wat volhoubaarheid oor die algemeen sal verbeter en dat dié ʼn beter toekoms vir die plaaslike gemeenskappe van Mosambiek kan skep.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/4319
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