Our profession holds an annual conference, this year in June at the AIA National Convention in Chicago. Ed Mazria, Founder and CEO of Architecture 2030, delivered the keynote address 'Design! Life Depends on It'. The 20-minute video lays out the blueprint for a carbon-free and just built environment by 2050, reviews the progress made in the building sector since issuing the 2030 Challenge in 2006, and outlines the critical role architects and designers must play in securing a livable future.
His organization, Architecture 2030, has the full support and endorsement of the National AIA. His challenge amounts to saying that the buidling industry must assert leadership in rapidly reducing carbon emissions. This position is important because the building and construction industry represents about 70% of urban emissions.This includes the emissions related to building these structures as well as the shipping, hauling, service delivery and maintenance involved in maintaining them, in other words, the local transportation sector and the building management industry.
As one of the myriad strategies available to reduce carbon emissions, it can represent a critical means of moving early and swiftly to make the transition to a clean economy, implementing carbon reduction ahead of global emissions agreements.
Update 8/14/14: From Architecture 2030 - Architects to phase out carbon by 2050 as declared at the 2014 UIA General Assembly in Durban