MAP Indonesia Helps With Earthquake Relief Via Bamboo Construction

For reconstruction, turn to bamboo to save tropical forests, writes the Mangrove Action Project’s Indonesia team. By using bamboo to construct buildings and furniture, the demand for sensitive hardwoods decreases. Though it is considered an invasive species in many environments, bamboo is a renewable resource that grows rapidly and can be reharvested in quick succession. Use of renewable materials is especially important after disasters—such as the Indian Ocean tsunami or the recent Yogyakarta earthquake—when a vast amount of rebuilding must be done quickly.

Via: The Mangrove Action Project News, 172nd Edition, June 24, 2006.

MAP Indonesia Helps With Earthquake Relief Via Bamboo Construction

MAP Indonesia first got involved with bamboo when seeking alternatives in rural coastal areas to use of mangroves for construction materials. Over the past several years MAP-Indonesia has developed half a dozen community centers built with treated bamboo as well as furniture and handicraft industries as part of our alternative livelihood program for rural fisherfolk.

These skills are coming in handy once again as MAP-Indonesia is playing a role in earthquake recovery in Yogyakarta, Java after last month's 5.9 Richter earthquake which left 800,000 people homeless. Five MAP-Indonesia bamboo construction trainers will be part of an earthquake resistant building workshop to take place on June 28-29 in Tembi Village, Bantual Yogyakarta. This workshop is led by Jorg Staam, with 14 years of experience as a bamboo carpenter in Columbia.

MAP-Indonesia is also assisting by constructing two bamboo treatment facilities, one in Tembi and one in the artisan village of Cebongan where hale all of MAP's furniture and bamboo construction trainers. This is part of a four-part program including developing a bamboo nursery/arboretum and production forest, a bamboo learning center, and a bamboo charcoal kiln for utilizing discarded bamboo from the local furniture making industry.

By promoting use of bamboo, which can be harvested sustainably up to 500 times before requiring replanting, MAP-Indonesia is helping to take the pressure off of mangroves and tropical rainforests. Tens of thousands of bamboos have been planted by communities working with MAP since introduction of bamboo as a livelihood alternative, also playing its role in terms of global climate control vis-a-vis carbon sequestration.

From: Benjamin Brown, MAP-Indonesia/YARL, seagrassroots [AT] gmail [DOT] com