My mentors tweet, blog and suggest various sites for me to look at and enrich my knowledge. My journeys fork and land me at interesting places. One such site I would like to share with you is

http://www.designboom.com/weblog/cat/9/view/9229/earth-a-building-material-of-the-future.html

It is a wonderful treatise on using the earth in its most basic form for building. We did it before, so why can’t we do it again.

I am originally from India, where I spent the early part of my life growing up and getting a real education as we traveled around the country in the quest of education, work and life.

We lived where the most common building material was clay, straw, timber, limestone, sand and cow dung. Clay was used to make pots, tiles and bricks fired in ovens to a beautiful red. Clay was also used to actually form the walls using rice straw as a reinforcement. We had some of the best Teak Wood in the world.

Cow dung was the disinfectant  and wall paint. Powdered limestone was the decoration in permanent or in erasable form. Roofs were made from bamboo, cashuarina poles, coconut husk ropes and palm fronds. Lime mortar was used to hold fired bricks together as well as construct the so called Madras Terrace with timber joists, tiles and mortar. Lime mortar was also used to plaster walls. Floors were beautiful Terracota or packed earth topped with a cow dung mixture.

There were wells in the community for water. I have seen beautiful huts in Indian villages kept so clean and livable.

So, why do we have to worry, there is going to be a better world. We have boundless resources in our Earth and with the ingenuity displayed by our fore fathers, we ourselves and the dynamic younger generation we can but go forward in a sensible manner. All that we have to do is manage our Earth, our Water and our Waste.

The trick is to combine the ancient and the modern and create the ultimate blend.

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