Age of Environmental Thrift
"We travel together, passengers on a little space ship, dependent on its vulnerable reserves of air and soil."
- Adlai Stephenson, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations (in a 1965 speech addressing the United Nations assembly)
Our natural resources are limited. Period. And with increasing demand, they are becoming scarcer and more costly. Thankfully, in recent years awareness for this issue has heightened and individuals, companies and governments are becoming increasingly environmentally-conscious. Many businesses are greening their operations, which often serves to improve their bottom line. But simply being "environmentally conscious" is no longer enough - we are at the dawn of the Age of Environmental Thrift where "Going Green" is no longer a revolutionary concept, it's just good practice.
The construction industry has typically been slow to adapt to new trends, however, and it has only relatively recently that it has begun to embrace the concept of sustainability through application of rating systems like LEEDTM, BREEAM and Green Star. Even so, sustainable design has limited ability to reduce whole earth impacts because the rate at which we use goods and services is growing so fast that the improvements we are making in the efficiency of their use is unable to keep pace.
In place of the questions that currently dominate conversations about sustainable design-how much does it cost and/or how much will it save-property owners now need to be asking themselves "Why are we using any resources at all?"
Rider Levett Bucknall | Life is our answer to our clients' need for financially and environmentally responsible project solutions in the Age of Environmental Thrift.