Andrew Whalley, Chairman, Grimshaw: ZERO
The ‘flow’ of Architecture in the Anthropocene is one of increasing acceleration. An exponential level of development is destroying the range of key planetary characteristics of Earth that enable it to support Homo sapiens and a whole range of other species.
The United Nations has categorically stated that the only way forward is a rapid deployment of energy-efficient and low-carbon building designs. Along with the inclusion of intelligent operational systems, construction will need to be optimized and natural resources reconsidered.
In 1961, President Kennedy committed the US to, within a decade, send a man to the moon and bring him back safely to earth. It was an unprecedented technical goal bordering on insurmountable. In 2019, over the next decade we need to set ourselves an even more ambitious target for the built environment. We need to increase the number of high-performance, low carbon buildings by six-fold from the current trend. To reach that milestone, near zero energy, zero emission buildings must become the construction standard globally by 2030. Only then will we be able to appropriately limit rising global temperatures.
A performative design approach that searches for optimized solutions is the critical and only way forward. This must be our generation’s ‘moonshot’ moment.
Andrew Whalley, Chairman, Grimshaw