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21 May 2021
The International Aid of the Luxembourg Red Cross was invited to the Coopération Luxembourgeoise conference, which took place on 17 and 18 May. During the conference, Alexander Jacoby, responsible for Burundi, presented how environmental considerations are integrated into the design of the Luxembourg Red Cross humanitarian projects.
“In Niger, we developed the Sahel Shelter, an emergency shelter inspired by local construction techniques,” he explains. The material used for this shelter is purchased locally, which reduces transport costs and CO2 emissions. The use of wood is limited in interventions in the Sahel to combat the desertification that affects the region”.
Tharcisse Ndimurwanko, focal point of the Luxembourg Red Cross in Burundi, added: “In Burundi, we carried out a study in 2018 and 2019 on the environmental impact of mud houses. It highlighted the very favourable carbon footprint of this construction technique,”
The use of earth blocks, which are readily available locally, ensures cool temperatures inside the house. The energy needs for construction is much lower than cement of clay bricks. In Burundi, the construction of houses is accompanied by various ecological measures: improved cookstoves, tree planting and rainwater harvesting.