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UN-Habitat is addressing urban climate change agenda through Cities and Climate Change Initiatives (CCCI). Collaborating with European Union under SWITCH Asia call for Sustainable Consumption and Production, UN-Habitat and partners are promoting sustainable housing in cities of Nepal.
Green Homes: the Sustainable Housing
Green Homes – the Sustainable Housing is an approach that includes housing systems which reduce pressure on natural resources and carbon emissions, thus resulting in human wellbeing, social equity, and promotion of green economy. Besides energy efficiency in 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.
The overall objective is to promote sustainable housing technologies and services to contribute towards mitigating climate change and reducing poverty through creation of green jobs and moving towards a green economy.
- Create an enabling policy environment to promote sustainable housing;
- Strengthen supply chains for sustainable housing and building capacity of SMEs to deliver household level green technologies and services
- Stimulate demand for sustainable housing
Need for Sustainable Housing
Housing sector has a significant contribution to urban economies in cities. 18% of total urban employment in Nepal is said to be contributed by construction industries. On the demand side there will be need of an additional 1 million urban houses in the decade of 2011 to shelter urban population. To meet this demand with the conventional building practices will contribute notoriously to pollution and climate change factors. The conventional brick-concrete buildings perform poorly in severe temperatures. Nepalese cities are facing challenges in water scarcity, waste management and environmental pollution. Growing climate variability is also likely to exacerbate the existing pressure on the urban services. To enhance sustainability and adapting climate change impacts, it is imperative to include eco-friendly practices and to curb the energy consumption in the housing sector – both embodied in construction materials as well as operational. Therefore, Green Homes is being proposed to address the demand of the time.
Features of Green Homes
- Use sustainable and environment friendly building materials,
- Energy efficient and comfort design
- Conserve energy and water
- Produce less waste in the process
- Improve indoor air quality
- National level policy makers
- SMEs involved in sustainable housing
- Urban poor youth and women
- Consumers of sustainable housing
- Professionals, researchers and general public
- Working in Partnership with stakeholders – the government, municipalities, SMEs, and consumers
- Pursuing holistic and systemic approach to ensure the promotion of sustainable housing systems as a whole and not just of a particular technology.
- Promoting SMEs to mainstream the green products and services.
- Assisting government in preparing policy frameworks to promote sustainable housing;
- Supporting three selected municipalities in promoting Green Homes.
- Stimulating demand for Green Homes components by strengthening supply chain.
- Bridging SMEs and consumers through awareness building and promotional activities.
- Building capacity of SMEs and creating green jobs for the urban poor.
- Developing voluntary Green Labeling System.