Architecture is interpreted as a skill of designing and constructing buildings. For architects to be able to design a good building, he or she needs to be conversant with the surrounding environment and the natural systems (Irvine). Generally, the understanding of the climatic condition of an area determines a lot in the career of an architect. The weather conditions existing in a given region over a long period determine the climate of the area, for example, an area can be hot and dry or cold and wet. Architects can contribute greatly to climate change in a given area because buildings are known to contribute almost half of a region’s carbon dioxide emissions and this affects a big percentage of climate change. Architects usually participate in the preservation of climatic changes by designing the healthiest, greenest, and environment-friendly buildings. To curb large emissions of carbon dioxide can slow the impacts of climate change.
As an architect, I will design buildings that will reduce the emission of gas; one of the methods to apply is using carbon smart materials. During the construction, I will avoid the use of high carbon-emitting substances like steel, concrete, aluminum, and foam insulation. As recommended by Global Organizations, such a step will help in reducing the emission of carbon dioxide to the environment. Additionally, I will conserve the climate by designing buildings through the application of green architecture. Hereby, architects design greenhouses that are environmentally friendly, such buildings take landscaping into account where residents will be able to enjoy fresh air in the house and where there are good working conditions when working from home (Cohen). During the construction of the green buildings, I will ensure that any natural resource around the region is protected, for example, ensure that any water body or waterways are not polluted by the construction by-products.
Designing buildings, I will be careful to come up with a construction that is efficient in the use of energy, water, and other resources. For energy consumption, I will advocate the residents to use renewable sources of energy to conserve both environment and climate. Using renewable sources of energy will help in reducing their costs and the emissions of carbon dioxide, which affects the climate in a negative way (Adams et al). For example, using solar energy as a source of light energy will reduce the costs and preserve water used in the hydro-generation of electricity. The buildings should be designed in a way such that they will be able to reduce waste, pollution, and degradation of the environment. During and after the construction, the waste should be well managed by designing a good drainage system to curb pollution of local waterways.
The buildings should be designed to protect people’s health and help them improve their productivity. For example, constructing a building in an unfriendly environment surrounded by industries contributing to air pollution will risk the health of the residents, hence before an architect designs a building, they should select a good location free from air, noise, and any other form of pollution. Additionally, using tools like energy modeling helps architects in reducing and predicting energy use in buildings. Life cycle assessment (LCA) is a good mechanism used by building professionals in helping them understand energy use and other environmental effects associated with all the stages of a building’s life span (Sartori et al) it entails, procurement, operation, construction, etc.
In conclusion, since all architects cannot reverse the effects of climate change completely, they can involve their team and clients by educating them about adaptive climatic changes and sharing the strategies with them. As architects, it’s our responsibility to support a justifiable design for a better and climate friendly environment. Our knowledge should be integrated with the new demands of climate change to secure a better future for all. This is not only a professional duty but a responsibility for all of us.
Adams, Samuel, and Christian Nsiah. “Reducing carbon dioxide emissions; does renewable energy matter?” Science of the Total Environment 693 (2019): 133288.
Cohen, Samantha Rebecca. Ecovillages as models for sustainable urban neighborhoods: design guidelines and methods for understanding, analyzing and designing sustainable communities. Diss. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 2017.
Irvine, Kim, et al. “Bridging the form and function gap in urban Green space design through environmental systems modeling.” Journal of Water Management Modeling (2021).
Sartori, Thais, et al. “A schematic framework for Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Green Building Rating System (GBRS).” Journal of Building Engineering 38 (2021): 102180.
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