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Climate Resilient Housing

Mahewa is a socio-economically backward ward in Gorakhpur. It is a low-lying waterlogging prone area along the Rapti River. GEAG established a micro-resilience planning mechanism in Mahewa ward to address issues of multiple sectors including agriculture and livelihoods, solid waste and drainage management, water and sanitation, housing, health and education. “Climate Resilient Infrastructure” (primary schools, houses and community toilets) emerged as a key priority under the findings of a baseline survey to build resilience against climate change.

Khudru is a daily wage laborer who lives in Mahewa. He benefited from GEAG’s intervention on “Risk Resilient Building” as his 435 sq feet land was used to construct a low-cost climate resilient house. For the purpose of demonstrating the construction of a low-cost house in Mahewa, technical support of SEEDS India was taken. Rat trap bond technology was adopted in constructing the house which not only reduces the cost as compared to conventional brick techniques but also gives avenues to the desires of the poor people to have a safe house in affordable cost.

Khudru’s house features unique design elements that limit the climate change impacts such as higher plinth levels to reduce the risk of waterlogging, walls constructed to moderate temperature and earthquake-proofing. The house is both climate resilient and produces fewer carbon emissions. The total cost of construction of this house was 0.15 million. GEAG was awarded the “Lighthouse Activity Award” for this initiative in 2013 by UNFCCC at the 19th Session of UN Conference of Parties at Warsaw, Poland. It is a boon for economically weak and GEAG is advocating with the government for the usage of this technology for the benefits of poor.