Architects have a big responsibility for the role the built environment plays in climate change. Globally, buildings consume 35 percent of all energy and 60 percent of all generated electricity—much of which is produced by fossil fuels. As the largest end-use energy sector, buildings account for more than one-third of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Therefore all buildings from our homes, offices, schools, or shopping centers—and the architects who design them—can either exacerbate our climate problem, or be a foundational part of the solution.
While many leading architects have gained a competitive advantage in the market by practicing environmentally responsible design, the profession as a whole has not traditionally been seen as a leader in addressing climate change. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) wants to change that.
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