Haitian Studies Association

Environment Blog

Working across Disciplines toward an Environmental Understanding for Haiti

Konbit miltidisiplinè pou konesans anviwònman ann Ayiti

The Working Group posts a monthly series of articles as well as announcements of any special events or initiatives here. If you have an idea for a post, please contact us at makandal@earthlink.net or legrace.benson@gmail.com.

Konbit pou Anviwònman an afiche la yon seri atik manswèl ansanm avèk tout kalite anons— evènman espesyal, inisyativ, elatriye. Si ou gen yon lide pou espas sa, tanpri kontakte nou a makandal@earthlink.net ou legrace.benson@gmail.com.


The Energy Potential of Marine Macroalgae in Haiti

Haiti, like most Caribbean countries, faces a growing energy crisis due to the increasing costs of fossil fuels and the lack of indigenous domestic energy supplies. Biofuels are increasingly considered as alternatives to fossil fuels to power modern societies, but they carry their own negative environmental impacts and limitations. In order for biofuels to make a more positive impact on the energy economy of Haiti, three conditions must be met: (i) a new source of millions of tons of sustainably sourced biomass must be discovered with fewer negative environmental impacts than fuel wood; (ii) the biomass must be safely and efficiently transformed into a useful fuel to serve the needs of homes and industries; and (iii) an entire transportation and distribution network has to be created to place this new energy supply in the hands of the end users. Today, we will discuss our research into turning sargassum seaweed into useful biogas energy.

Read More »


SOIL Haiti – A Circular Economy Model for Urban Sanitation in Vulnerable Communities

Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods (SOIL) is a Haiti-based non-profit social enterprise that is setting a global example for how to affordably and sustainably provide safely managed sanitation in rapidly growing urban communities. Since 2006, SOIL has been working to provide access to in-home sanitation through its EkoLakay toilet service. Its circular economy approach includes providing in-home toilets, the collection and treatment of wastes, and the transformation of that waste into rich, organic compost. SOIL’s work sits at the intersection of human rights, environmental justice, and economic development, and we are proud of our long-term commitment to Haiti.

Read More »