When I was born there were three billion people on the planet. Four decades later there are now more than seven billion. The way that we live, work, and
communicate continues to increase global consumption of energy at an alarming rate. The idea that there are data centers
all over the world using energy to cool the servers that store
the information is in many ways ironic, given that most of it is
simply ‘hot air’ – the everyday communication of social media.
So as designers we have a responsibility to challenge the norm
and provide our clients and stakeholders with buildings and
places that respect the immediate and wider environment.
While we cannot avoid energy consumption, the challenge
we face is to design carbon neutral buildings which do not adversely impact on the environment.
WE LIKE TO REFER TO THIS AS ENVIRONMENTALLY
So much of this is about education. The way we use our spaces
and places, both internally and externally, impacts our wellbeing and affects our health. Our work in the Far East has led us
to collaboration with Vanke China Ltd. on the design of China’s first BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Energy
Assessment Methodology) ‘Outstanding’ project – The Beijing
Green Building Park Visitors Centre. This project is a ‘tour de
force’ in both passive and active environmental design.
Passive in that the building uses very little energy in the first instance. Building orientation is the simple solution to addressing
the initial problems allowing daylight from the north and solar
control on the south façade. The spaces are naturally ventilated; daylight provides the main source of light (only task light-
THE FUTURE OF
By Ian Bogle