Adobe and rammed earth constructions house approximately one fifth of the world’s population. As a building material, earth is natural, recyclable, generally abundant and requires little energy to extract and prepare for use in construc- tion. Earthen structures can be erected quickly, are inexpensive, and have natural resistance to fire and insects.
Compared to concrete, earth materials also have low-environmental impact, very low-embodied energy and good insulation for heat and sound. Since many regions have a tradition of earthen architecture, promoting and preserving earth structures has great potential to sustain cultural heritage.