Watch: The woman turning Karachi’s garbage into houses

September 5th, 2016

Karachi, the largest city in Pakistan, produces around 10,000 tonnes of rubbish every day, most of which goes straight to landfill. It's a growing, unsustainable problem, but one former botanist may have found the building blocks of an answer: turn it into houses. Nargis Latif has been collecting clean waste products from factories and items such as wrappers from landfill sites,...

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Karachi, the largest city in Pakistan, produces around 10,000 tonnes of rubbish every day, most of which goes straight to landfill. It’s a growing, unsustainable problem, but one former botanist may have found the building blocks of an answer: turn it into houses.

Nargis Latif has been collecting clean waste products from factories and items such as wrappers from landfill sites, reusing these perfectly reusable items in one of the most useful ways possible. The items are put into large bags, compacted and bound together to form ‘bricks’, which are then used to form houses and shelters. These have become known as ‘silver homes’, due to the silvery plastic material that coats the bricks.

As Latif points out in the video above (made by CNN), these homes are weather-proof, low-cost and can be put up in a matter of hours. And as well as reducing the amount of waste that would otherwise go to landfill, Latif is also helping provide homes in a city that is desperately short of housing.

Someone put Latif on the planning and building committee of, well, everywhere, please.

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