This video and article introduce the invention of a cleaner, more eco-friendly concrete substitute inspired by the earthen houses of the inventor's home country of Togo.
Students learn about the impact of concrete and cement on the climate and an alternative that could help reduce CO2 emissions.
This resource helps expand students' view of climate solutions beyond those of renewable energy, tree planting, and other commonly known solutions.
The solution presented uses technology and materials already in use rather than relying on technological innovation to become impactful.
The video ends at 3:33.
Students should be familiar with the greenhouse effect and how greenhouse gases and fossil fuels contribute to climate change.
Since the article and video present the same information, students can choose which to engage with based on preference or the availability of an Internet connection in class.
As an extension, have students research other innovative climate solutions from the links in the article or by looking through the table of solutions presented here.
To learn more about climate solutions and the industrial sector, have students take this course on industrial innovation.
When discussing social justice issues and global sustainability in social studies classes, consider how this solution could help with both.
This video resource presents the work of material scientist Gnanli Landrou, who has invented a cement-free building material called Cleancrete. The video provides a good explanation of how Portland cement is produced, the resulting carbon emissions, and why a cleaner building material is needed. The structural limitations of Cleancrete are acknowledged, which may provide a good discussion topic for students. This resource is well sourced, visually attractive, and is recommended for teaching.
Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
ETS1: Engineering Design
MS-ETS1-1 Define the criteria and constraints of a design problem with sufficient precision to ensure a successful solution, taking into account relevant scientific principles and potential impacts on people and the natural environment that may limit possible solutions.
HS-ETS1-2 Design a solution to a complex real-world problem by breaking it down into smaller, more manageable problems that can be solved through engineering.
Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
Speaking & Listening (K-12)
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.2 Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.
College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
D4.6.9-12 Use disciplinary and interdisciplinary lenses to understand the characteristics and causes of local, regional, and global problems; instances of such problems in multiple contexts; and challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address these problems over time and place.