Meeting the urgent need for climate action, with decarbonization strategies for materials, design, practice, and policy.
Architecture must quickly kick its carbon habit and minimize the threat of climate change. The profession has already made great progress toward eliminating CO2 emissions from new buildings’ operations. But energy efficiency is just the first step. The next is to shift to renewables and eliminate emissions from building materials, also known as embodied carbon. AIA is making climate change a major priority for the foreseeable future, and will shortly be sharing a draft action plan for member feedback. As new AIA president Jane Frederick, FAIA, writes in her first letter to members, “Architects have the specialized skills and perspective to help solve this unique challenge.” What’s more, the decarbonization process offers architects an epochal opportunity to reinvent how and what they design. This special issue of ARCHITECT, edited in partnership with the nonprofit Architecture 2030 and its founder and CEO, Edward Mazria, FAIA, is meant to help architects get CO2 out of their systems, for the health, safety, and welfare of us all.
Contents of the Carbon Issue
- It’s Time to Quit: A Call to Action on Climate, Carbon, and the Built Environment
- The Language of Carbon
- Sustainable Building Materials for Low Embodied Carbon
- Concrete, Steel, or Wood: Searching for Zero-Net-Carbon Structural Materials
- How to Measure Embodied Carbon
- Five Construction Details to Reduce Embodied and Operational Carbon
- Renovation, Restoration, and Adaptive Reuse: The Understated Value of Existing Buildings
- With Housing’s Carbon Footprint, Density Matters
- Aim Higher: How to Transition Your Firm to Zero Net Carbon
- Eight Questions You’ll Hear When Proposing Zero-Carbon Design
- Policies for Embodied Carbon: An International Snapshot
- Achieving Zero: How to Reach Zero Net Carbon, and Beyond
- Architecture 2030’s Achieving Zero policy is a framework for eliminating emissions from the building sector.
- The Architecture Profession Should Commit to a Zero-Net-Carbon Future