Chapter

Technologies and Innovations for Development

pp 113-128

Date:

Environmental Impacts of Building Technologies: A Comparative Study in Kutch District, Gujarat State, India

  • Daniel PittetAffiliated withWorld Habitat Research Centre, University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland Email author 
  • , K. S. JagadishAffiliated withIndian Institute of Science (IISc)
  • , Tejas KotakAffiliated withHunnarshala Foundation
  • , Kiran VaghelaAffiliated withHunnarshala Foundation
  • , Pratik ZaveriAffiliated withHunnarshala Foundation
  • , Humaira SareshwalaAffiliated withCenter for Environmental Planning and Technology University
  • , Jayesh GohelAffiliated withCenter for Environmental Planning and Technology University

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Abstract

This chapter is based on the findings of a research project co-financed by the Rector’s Conference of the Swiss Universities of Applied Sciences (KFH) and carried out in 2008–2009 in collaboration between the World Habitat Research Centre, University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland (SUPSI), Lugano, the Center for Environmental Planning and Technology University (CEPT), Faculty of Architecture in Ahmadabad, India, and Hunnarshala Foundation for Building Technology and Innovations in Bhuj, Gujarat, India. The project aims at filling a gap in the assessment of environmental impacts of building technologies in India. Previous research on global sustainability of post-disaster reconstruction have indeed clearly identified the lack of scientific data on such impacts in this country (Ding 2008; Duyne Barenstein and Pittet 2007; Gumaste 2006; Jönsson 2000). The lack of data hinders agencies and professionals from making informed choices of materials and technologies aiming at reducing environmental impacts of construction. Based on these considerations, the project’s specific objectives were (a) to design and test a methodology for assessing the environmental impacts of building materials in a specific context, (b) to provide data on environmental impacts of building technologies in Kutch District, (c) to provide and disseminate knowledge for increasing the sustainability of housing projects, and (d) to exchange and transfer knowledge and research capacity on environmental impacts of building materials assessment.