Don’t ignore the small details
We can do our small bit towards reducing material consumption and wastage and take baby steps towards eco-sensitivity.
Climate is changing possibly faster than we change mobile phones; data on Green House Gas (GHG) emission is outnumbering population numbers; seminars and published papers on ecological themes could be doubling every six months and carbon is going to outwit politics as the common talk everywhere. All these phenomena express our growing tensions, where consumption is turning into concern.
However, not all of the concerns have turned into action, partly because majority of the talk focuses on mega solutions involving international policies, federal governments, large public initiatives and such others, where implementing is as Herculean a task as is achieving consensus. As if individuals cannot do much about the carbon emission.
Of course, as individuals we can also do our small bit towards reducing carbon, consumption and wastage, be it refusing plastic containers or simple alternatives of carrying our own needs. In the construction sector too, there can be many baby steps towards eco-sensitivity, however small they may appear. While major items like wall, floor or roof would make a major difference, small items too matter.
Window grills can be a good case in point. There was a time when 10 mm diameter m.s. rods were welded six inches apart, a spacing evolved from the minimum gap needed for anyone, including a child, to slip through and this gap was safe enough. The rods were also felt to be strong enough. Slowly, the spacing became lesser, as if five inch is safer than six inch, where both the spacing are narrow enough anyway. Today it is common to see up to three inch spacing!
Simultaneously, the thickness of steel rod also increased from 10 to 12 mm, and the costlier hexagon shape started to replace the round and square. Logically if a thief can cut the 10 mm rod, cutting off an additional two mm will pose no major hurdles, given all the latest melting acids and cutting machines. Yet, we feel safer with thicker rods; as such we believe that they make better guard bars.
The net effect is the traditional 10 mm rods at six inch spacing has now led to 12 mm rods at four inch spacing, nearly doubling the steel consumption, with only marginal increase in security. Breaking into houses by cutting the window rods simply continues.
The above narration should not be misunderstood as neglecting security, but as a case of non-judicious increase in material, possibly advocated by players in the fabrication and construction industry, to jack up the total budget. For a determined thief, grill is no deterrent. So, we need alternative security measures, not pumping more steel into the windows, turning the house into a cage.
A little time spent thinking about the logic of window grills and keeping it judicious, however small the action is, has its contribution. And so with all the design issues, if deeply thought over.