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Brick production is still an ancient practice in many countries, where bricks are produced in artisanal kilns fueled by coal, wood, dung and other biomass materials. As a result, voluminous amounts of black carbon are spewed into the atmosphere, contaminating the air, water and earth along with the lungs of millions of people who work or live near the kilns. Black carbon has 460-1,500 times more warming potential than CO2.
Most brick production takes place in Asia. For example, there are more than 100,000 kilns in India, producing between 150 and 200 million bricks annually, and almost 20 billion bricks produced annually in Bangladesh. Some of these kilns have been operating for more than a century. Latin America also has a considerable number of brick production facilities, from an estimated 300 in Chile, to between 8 and 10 thousand in Peru, to approximately 17,000 in Mexico.
Recent studies show that implementing more efficient technologies, mainly during the firing of bricks, can result in reductions of pollutant emissions from 10 to 50%, depending on the process, scale and fuel used. The transition to modern, energy-efficient and environment friendly practices of brick-making is not an easy task as tradition and poverty militate against change. New approaches involve not only new technology but also economic incentives and new regulatory and public policies.
There are significant opportunities to improve local and regional air quality, provide economic benefits to communities, and reduce adverse health impacts in adjacent communities by improving brick production process via regional and international coordination to raise awareness about the importance of this issue. CCAC partners work to leverage high-level political will in Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia and Africa to identify possibilities for brick kiln mitigation and establish a mechanism to share information. Change will require transfer of knowledge from countries that have transitioned to modern brick production, and it is critical to tackle this complex issue from a cross-sectoral and inter-agency perspective.
To achieve its objectives, the CCAC Brick Production initiative is working on:
This document presents results from the Climate & Clean Air Coalition’s Bricks Initiative reported between July 2016 and June 2017. These results were recorded using the Demonstrating...
This report is an overview of the Coalition's progress from 2016 to 2017 and, because it is our 5th anniversary, includes information on the status of short-lived climate pollutant emissions,...
Lead Partner: A Coalition partner with an active role in coordinating, monitoring and guiding the work of an initiative.
Implementer: A Coalition partner or actor receiving Coalition funds to implement an activity or initiative.
Produced as part of the CCAC Bricks Initiative, this factsheet/poster provides an overview of how to:
This network for brick producers serves to support the exchange of knowledge under the program: "Energy efficiency for brick producers in Latin America to mitigate climate change-EELA...
This report assesses the environmental, energy and financial performance of brick production in India. Drawing on this assessment, it provides short-term recommendations to improve brick kiln...
This report is intended to help achieve near-term climate and other benefits by providing information and examples of a variety of low-cost, high-impact and high feasibility opportunities to...
This report looks into the use of improved (biomass) cookstoves (ICs) as a Black Carbon (BC) mitigation measure with significant climate and health benefits. ICs encompass a range of technologies...