Improving Brick Manufacturing in Bangladesh to Promote Clean Air and Better Health

Across South Asia, the brick manufacturing industry is dominated by inefficient, coal-burning kilns. Brick kilns are one of the largest emitters in the region. In Bangladesh, kilns contribute 17 percent of the country’s annual CO2 emissions and 11 percent of PM2.5. The pollution released by these kilns worsens local air quality, health, and agricultural productivity, and global climate. Reducing these emissions could generate large social benefits and slower global warming. A properly constructed and operated zigzag kiln can reduce black carbon by 41 percent, CO2 by 21 percent, and PM2.5 by 80 percent—and strikingly, also increase kiln profitability. Yet the vast majority are incorrectly constructed and operated. The research team's preliminary work found that lack of knowledge regarding proper construction and operation and inattention to worker incentives undermine kiln operation. The researchers will conduct a randomized intervention among kiln owners in Bangladesh that relaxes these barriers to improve kiln performance, reduce air pollution, and lower greenhouse gas emissions.

Check out the pilot of this study that was funded by the King Climate Action Initiative.

RFP Cycle:
Spring 2022
  • Full project