Amongst human activities, building is the most polluting and the largest emitter of CO2 into the atmosphere, and therefore contributes significantly to global warming which is threatening life on our planet. Humanity must face an unprecedented challenge that will require committing the next 40 years to heal the Earth, to preserve nature with the same passion, the same dedication, the same skill with which, in the past, it has managed to dominate it. It is time for architects to take their places within a significant paradigm shift, a revolution of thought, with a new awareness of their role and their responsibilities in society; they can only do this by reconsidering the substance, the process and purpose of their education that today has to do with issues of human survival in the twenty-first century world.
Education and design must become environmentally focused.
The 2010 Imperative by Edward Mazria
In May 2005, in a speech to the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada, American architect Edward Mazria challenged the international building community to take the lead in combating climate change. The immediate result was that, in June 2005, sixteen of the most important institutions in the field of architecture worldwide signed the Declaration of Las Vegas, in which was recognized “the great responsibility placed on the architecture profession to do all it can to influence a major reduction in the level of carbon emissions that result from the creation and life-cycle of the build environment.”
In February 2007 architect Edward Mazria launched the 2010 Imperative and the 2030 Challenge online. (www.architecture2030.org). The first addresses the change required in education - by the year 2010: "ecological literacy must become a central tenet of design education: a major transformation of the academic community responsible for design must begin now." The second - by 2030 – addresses the change required in design - at all scales - to reduce the level of CO2 emissions produced by building activity by 50% in order to arrive at the fateful date of 2050, when new generations could envisage the future as a surprise rather than a threat. Educators, professionals, entrepreneurs, technicians, providers and administrators working in the field of construction are called to work toward these two critical milestones of our century.
Writings and interviews
Relazione di Ed Mazria alla Commissione Energia e Risorse Naturali del Senato degli Stati Uniti, marzo 2009 (video, min 38:30)
a Ed Mazria, in BLDG BLOG, gennaio 2007 (traduzione di Franca
il Rinascimento verde, in Forum "Pianificare, Progettare,
Costruire, Abitare: Saperi e pratiche innovative per la sostenibilità
sociale e ambientale in Trentino", Convegno a Mezzocorona,
Trento, marzo 2005 (pdf)
the Architecture, Stupid!, da Solar Today, mag/giu 2003 (traduzione
di Franca Bossalino)