#SolutionMonday: How to survive without aircon during heat waves

Heat Waves - climateaction

#SolutionMonday: How to survive without aircon during heat waves

Hello readers.

Welcome to #SolutionMonday on CleanbuildVoices!

If you live in any region in Africa, it may interest you to know that Africa is experiencing a temperature anomaly– a negative departure from the average temperature over a given period.

According to data, Africa has been warming steadily in the last two decades. What is responsible for this? The culprit is human-caused climate change.

As climate change continues to disrupt weather patterns making wet seasons wetter and dry season drier and hotter, adapting to it becomes a matter of survival.

In today’s edition of #SolutionMonday, we share tips for surviving heat waves even without air conditioners. Yes, air conditioning is a big contributor to climate change because it uses a massive amount of electricity, and can leak potent greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

Ensure good ventilation

Ventilation does not only help your home rid itself of moisture, smoke, cooking odors, and indoor pollutants, it also keeps the air fresh. To reduce extreme heat, you have to be quite strategic about ventilation.

In the cooler evenings, open all windows and promote as much air circulation as possible. When the sun rises, shut all doors and windows, including curtains and blinds as well, to keep the indoors cool for as long as possible.

As soon as outside air cools to a lower temperature than inside (in the evenings or at night), you can open up the windows and turn on the fans again.

Make a hammock

If you’ve ever slept in a hammock, you would agree that there are many benefits of sleeping in one. It can be quite difficult to have an afternoon nap in oppressive heat; as such, hammocks are designed to help you stay cool while trying to sleep in the summer.

There are self-help articles that can teach you how to make a hammock. Click here to read clever ways to build your own do-it-yourself hammock.

Design your own eco-cooler

In our last edition of #FactFriday, we shone a spotlight on remarkable innovations that can help to solve our environmental problems. One of such is eco-coolers invented by a Bangladeshi man for poor communities that were experiencing extreme heat waves.

From empty plastic bottles, the ingenious man designed an effective cooling system that does not need electricity. Click here to watch a video of how to build eco-coolers.

Take cool showers

Never underestimate the cooling power of water. Take cool showers to feel refreshed and less heated. You may also consider filling a spray bottle with cold water for refreshing spritzes throughout the day.

If you live in an area where water is scarce, wet towels and bandannas can have a cooling effect when placed on the shoulders or head.

Turn off extra sources of heat

Traditional light bulbs generate more heat than their LED counterparts. You may wish to replace them with energy-saving bulbs.

Always remember to turn off your appliances when they are not in use. Eat fresh foods and vegetables that do not require you to turn on the oven or stove to cook.

Maintain good hydration

Since dehydration is one of the related illnesses people are prone to during heat waves, remember to maintain an adequate level of hydration.

This means you’ll need to consume more water than you usually do when it’s hot. Wherever you go, take with you a water bottle, ready to replenish your supply of drinking water.

Visit public buildings with air conditioning

You don’t have to stay indoors all day, especially during the hottest part of the day. Stroll to public buildings with air conditioning if the heat becomes too intense. Libraries, shopping malls, and movie theaters can all be good places to cool down.

You don’t have to buy anything. However, for appearance sake, you could choose to make a small purchase. More than anything it will cement your right to be there.

Watch this space as we’ll be back for another edition of our #SolutionMonday.

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