Parras Lechuguilla[edit | edit source]

Description

Lechuguilla is an excellent example of an alternative material. Lechuguilla is used instead of synthetic or animal products to make rope, brushes, brooms, matts, etc.

Location

On Ramos Arizpe, behind a huge metal gate. Look in, and if you see a short dirt road leading to an open arch door, you're at the right place.

Justification

Lechuguilla is a locally harvested material that is used by local workers. It does not pose the human health hazards that synthetic materials do, and does not create the waste and moral issues that animal products do.

Issues

The lechuguilla is currently harvested from the wild rather than farmed. While this might be very appropriate for a certain amount of production, it could cause problems with the ecosystem in the surrounding area if the wild plants are over-harvested for greatly increased production.

Lechuguilla.jpg

AltMat Bucket Retriever for Well[edit | edit source]

Description

This is an example of all-natural and reused materials. It's a huge log with a reused bar stuck into it for a handle. It's used in a wind-pumped well to retrieve buckets of trash when it needs to be cleaned.

Location

Located on a Nogales orchard underneath one of the wind pumps on someone's property north of town.

Justification

This reduces waste by reusing materials, and is a better choice for the environment than synthetic or new materials.

Issues

Depending on where the log came from, it could be contributing to deforestation.

AltMat Fence[edit | edit source]

Description

This is an example of alternative materials. It's a fence made out of scrap wood instead of new lumber.

Location

Located on the border of a Nogales orchard on someone's property north of town.

Justification

This is appropriate because it is reusing local materials that were already lying around. It helps cut back on the use of new wood. It is also much more visually pleasing.

Issues

Wood deteriorates over time, so the fence will have to be replaced sooner than if a stone wall or metal fence was used instead. Also, since each piece of wood is very unique, the strength at different places on the fence probably varies. However, since all the pieces of wood are fairly large, there may not be a problem with the fence being too weak at any given spot.

Carrizo Roof[edit | edit source]

Description

Bamboo, or carrizo, is a building material that is traditionally used in Mexico as part of the roof of an adobe house.

Location

Carrizo is found growing along waterways in Parras, such as arroyos and asequias (channels flowing from the estanques)

Justification as Appropriate

Carrizo is an appropriate building material because it is a local, inexpensive and renewable resource, and because building with it leverages this community's existing knowledge

Issues with the Appropriateness

Althogh bamboo is touted as an environmentally friendly building material, in dry climates there is another issue to consider. Carrizo needs a lot of water, and it can significantly reduce the water flow through the channels and streams in desert areas.

Instructions[edit | edit source]

To add a new AT implementation to this resource, Copy and paste the following into notepad. Make the appropriate edits (replace allcap text) and then paste above the Instructions line in the edit window.


=== NAME OF TECHNOLOGY ===

;Description
:WHAT KIND OF AT IS IT? HOW IS IT USED? FOR WHAT?
;Location
:WHERE IS IT LOCATED?
;Justification as Appropriate
:WHY DO YOU CONSIDER IT AT, BASED ON A DEFINITION OF AT?
;Issues with the Appropriateness
:IN WHAT WAYS DOES IT NOT MEET A DEFINITION OF AT.
;Notes
:E.G. LINK TO THE ORGANIZATION OR PROJECT, DELETE IF NOT APPLICABLE.

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