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The project aims to use clay based technologies to combat the effect of climate change (drought and heat waves) on urban communities.



The project aims to implement clay based technologies in 5 residential areas of Ahmedabad city in India in the year 2019 to help communities adapt to drought (increasing water shortages) and deadly heat waves (increasing temperatures). In various phases of the project, remote sensing will be used to monitor residential areas in the city. A Climate Smart Technology (CST) solution package will also be developed during the course of the project. The package will include a combination of clay based technologies that can be customised for a particular residential area and will be crucial in the development of climate resilient communities. The project’s thought process is in line with that of Ahmedabad’s heat action plan and it aims to influence the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) for including the CST solution package in the 2020 heat action plan. This action will not only help scale up the project but will also make way for the generation of sustainable livelihood opportunities in the communities. A brief description of the technologies is as follows

Is this proposal for a practice or a project?


What actions do you propose?

Twelve key actions points that will guide the flow of the project are described below.

Action point 1 – Engagement with Govt. of India & Govt. of Gujarat

The project team will brief the Govt. officials regarding the project and will take necessary permissions for very high resolution satellite/airborne color infrared (CIR) remote sensing & aerial thermography of residential areas of Ahmedabad city. The team will also take feedback of Govt. officials on the same and will incorporate the feedback in the project.    

Action point 2 - Engagement with Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC)

The project team will brief AMC officials regarding the implementation of the project and will get their feedback/guidance on the proposed intervention and how it can be aligned with the Ahmedabad’s Heat Action Plan (AHAP) 2019. The team will also explore the possibilities of diversion of funds supporting the implementation of AHAP-2019 & collaboration opportunities with organizations involved in similar kind of work.  The feedback received will be incorporated in the proposed intervention.

Action point 3 - Current and potential green & cool roof mapping

Roofs exhibit several advantages like absorbing rainwater, providing thermal insulation & increasing energy efficiency etc. In project context, three of the four clay based technologies can be implemented on roofs and this makes monitoring of roofs an integral part of the project. Very high resolution satellite/airborne color infrared (CIR) remote sensing data & aerial thermography will be used to identify actual green or cool roofs and determine which roofs can be potentially converted into green or cool roofs. The data & map developed from this process will be used by project team to concentrate & direct its efforts towards the residential areas which are in dire need of the solutions to adapt from heat waves.

Action point 4 – Site selection

Five residential areas in Ahmedabad city will be selected for the project implementation. The criteria for selection is described in the section - “Where will these actions be taken?” (Please have a look on the same in advance). The project team will  select the site after analyzing the remote sensing data &  primary, secondary research data. The team will consult with AMC officials regarding the same.

Action point 5 – Technology customization

Each site selected will bring a unique challenge for the project team to customize the technology so that it best suits the selected residential area. Consultation with relevant research institutes & organizations working on similar technologies will be an integral part of this action point.

Action point 6 – Setup of a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME)

The project will invest funds & provide support for the development of an SME in the city which will develop basic units [Clay pots & pipes for clay pot & pipe irrigation technology, clay diyas (a small cup-shaped oil lamp made of baked clay) for inverted earthen pot insulation system & hollow clay cylinders for CoolAnt eco friendly natural air cooling system] of the clay based technologies. A product design lab will also be developed as part of the enterprise and its main function will be to optimize the design of the technologies in accordance with the site constraints with an aim of improving the efficiency and acceptability of clay based technologies. This action point will help in generating sustainable livelihood opportunities for artisans and could revitalize a fading traditional craft.

Action point 7 - Community engagement

The project team will engage with communities in residential areas regarding the benefits of the clay based technologies and how it can help build climate resilient communities. IEC materials, remote sensing maps (already developed, as mentioned in action point 3) & technology brochures will be developed as tools to facilitate the process.  

Action point 8 – Technology implementation

Detailed description of clay based technologies that will be implemented is as follows:-

a)  Clay pot irrigation technology –

b)  Clay pipe irrigation technology –

c)  CoolAnt eco friendly natural air cooling system –

d)  Inverted earthen pot insulation system –

Action point 9 – Technology monitoring

The technologies implemented across the city will be monitored closely for their effectiveness against heat waves and/or drought (water shortage). Comparison of pre and post intervention remote sensing data will be an important tool to validate the effectiveness of the technology implemented. The reduction in water & carbon footprints of the community will be analyzed with an aim to optimize the water-energy nexus of the community and minimize the trade offs and promote synergies in the nexus.

Besides the technical aspects of the technologies, they will also be assessed for their social acceptability. A user feedback study will be carried out as part of this action point.   

Action point 10 – Development of Climate Smart Technology (CST) solution package

With the technologies implemented at 5 different locations in the city and closely monitored for their effectiveness & user friendliness, the team will improve the technologies further and proceed with the development of CST solution package. The package will be a combination of improved clay based technologies that can be customized as per the site constraints. The package will promote the community pooling of resources (water, energy & money) to help communities adapt to climate change. 

Action point 11 – Dissemination workshop

The workshop will provide the project team an opportunity to share project experience with selected members of community from the intervention area, research institutes who have consulted the team for technology customization, AMC officials, clay artisans, SME (The enterprise that will be developed as part of the project), media etc. The workshop will also provide a platform to launch the CST solution package and influence the AMC officials to include the package in the 2020 Ahmedabad’s heat action plan.

Action point 12 – Launch of Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)

This action point is aimed to increase the impact of the project and disseminate information related to the project worldwide. An MOOC will be developed during the course of the project and will be launched on one of the MOOC platforms like UNITAR, FutureLearn, EDX, Coursera etc. This MOOC will also provide the opportunity for the project team to crowdsource the feedback related to project.  

Who will take these actions?

Development Alternatives in collaboration with technology developers will be primarily responsible for carrying out the actions stated above. During the course of the project the team will also consult/collaborate with AMC officials, research institutes etc.

Where will these actions be taken?

The project will be implemented in five residential areas in Ahmedabad city of India. The remote sensing data & maps will be very crucial & will act as a primary filter in the selection of community spaces & household roofs where the clay based technologies can be implemented. Further short listing of sites will be done in such a way that each one of them will challenge the project team with a unique set of variables for technology customization. The table below provides the details about different variables that will be encountered at different sites while implementing the clay based technologies.

A permutation & combination of these set of variables will ensure that each site selected will be unique in itself. Preference will be given to the residential areas with bungalows. High rise apartments may be considered only for the implementation in community spaces of clay pot & pipe irrigation technology and CoolAnt eco friendly natural air cooling system.

In addition, specify the country or countries where these actions will be taken.


Country 2

No country selected

Country 3

No country selected

Country 4

No country selected

Country 5

No country selected


What impact will these actions have on greenhouse gas emissions and/or adapting to climate change?

What are other key benefits?


What are the proposal’s projected costs?


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