Cement is expensive all over the world but it is especially expensive in Rwanda and Uganda. Most cement is imported and these countries’ landlocked geography raises transportation costs of a heavy material. The high price of cement is why many floors are made with very little cement and thin pours which result in cracking and waste. While a cracked floor with cement is nearly impossible to repair, an earthen floor without cement can easily be repaired and re-sealed.
Cement and concrete are also responsible for 5% of global carbon emissions. Cement is the second most used material in the world, after water and requires significant energy to produce. Meanwhile, earthen floors have 90% less embedded energy and are structurally strong, waterproof, and abrasion resistant. There are significantly more environmentally sustainable building materials than cement and part of our mission is to put the developing world on a more sustainable development path.