August 24, 2015, The three-day long exhibition on ‘Sustainable and Safer Housing Technologies’ concluded with an overwhelming number of visitors including practitioners, entrepreneurs, and students.
The feedback received from visitors showed that there is a huge demand for earthquake resilient low-cost appropriate technological solutions for housing both for urban and rural context.
Addressing the half-day workshop organized on the same theme, in the sidelines of the exhibition, Sambhu KC, joint secretary at the Ministry of Urban Development stressed on the need to bring in low-cost technological options for reconstruction so that people affected by the earthquake will be able to build multi-hazard resilient houses.
During the workshop, Padma Sunder Joshi, Habitat Program Manager at the United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN-Habitat) urged the government in developing a strategy to build capacity of entrepreneurs and promotion of local construction materials thereby adopting greener approach in rebuilding. He also emphasized on bringing on-board the people with technical knowledge and skills in order to meet the huge demand for such skills during recovery and reconstruction.
In his remarks, Uffe Janson, Head of Operations at the Delegation of the European Union to Nepal mentioned that protection and management of natural resources is a key to the European Union and they would like to support in ‘Building Back Safer’.
More than 15 organizations showcased more than half a dozen safe, reliable and earthquake resilient construction technologies and some of them provided knowledge to visitors on sustainable housing technologies. The event also received wider media coverage by national television and radio stations and newspapers.
The exhibition including a half-day workshop in the sidelines was jointly organized by the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction, Institute of Engineering, Asian Institute of Technology Bangkok and UN-Habitat in Nepal from 20-22 August, 2015 at Pulckowk Campus, Lalitpur.
The ‘Green Homes’ Initiative
Green Homes or Sustainable Housing is an approach that includes household systems that reduce pressure on natural resources and carbon emissions, thus resulting in human wellbeing, social equity, and green economy. Besides energy efficient buildings, it also includes eco-friendly practices for water and waste management systems such as rainwater harvesting, and waste/wastewater recycling. Green homes are more than just green buildings – they reflect a sustainable lifestyle based on eco-friendly systems and behavior.
In order to address the urban climate change issues, as part of the Cities and Climate Change Initiatives (CCCI), UN-Habitat and partners are implementing ‘Green Homes: Promoting Sustainable Housing in Nepal’ project in association with the Government of Nepal and the European Union.
This three-year project is implemented primarily in three cities of Nepal; Lalitpur, Pokhara and Dharan with wider impact to other municipalities. The project is working with the Department of Urban Development and Building Construction under the Ministry of Urban Development and three selected municipalities to build capacities of agencies and promote Small and Medium-sized Enterprises and consumers towards sustainable housing.