Read the full story at Mother Nature Network.
While it generally falls under the “scourge” category, bottled water plays an indispensible role in disaster recovery efforts. It’s also one of the first, if not the first, thing to appear after a disaster, natural or manmade, strikes — truckloads of the stuff can show up hours, sometimes days, before the medicine, the clothing, the back-up generators, the supplies, and the endless FEMA paperwork arrive on the scene. It’s one of those rare occasions when a not-so-necessary evil is rendered absolutely necessary.And more often than not, these thousands upon thousands of plastic water bottles distributed to and discarded by disaster survivors end up being added to what is undoubtedly already a huge — perhaps catastrophic —mess. Realizing that a.) bottled water is generally super-quick to arrive at relief sites and b.) the consumed and discarded bottles are generally not recycled or reused considering the sometimes dire circumstances surrounding their deployment, a student team from the School of Architecture & Design at the New York Institute of Technology have conceived a prototype disaster relief shelter with a “durable, climate-appropriate” roofing system constructed from, you guessed it, upcycled plastic water bottles.