Architects Declare launch 'Practice Guide 2021'

2 November 2021

Is the term 'sustainable' hijacked?

That's exactly what Architects Declare are questioning, claiming that many practices are continuing 'business as usual’.

The organisation makes the claim in a 102-page design guide, launched on the eve of of the COP26 climate summit, to help architects ‘transform’ the built environment. Architects Declare is a coalition of 1,155 practices who have vowed to act to address the climate and biodiversity emergency.Created by an Architects Declare working group, the document aims to help signatories convert their declaration into meaningful action and build momentum within their practice.

Part one of the guide sets out five steps for how practices can reform their ‘business strategy and operations’ in the face of the climate crisis, while part two provides a project design guide with more than 60 examples, focusing on day-to-day advice for designing sustainable buildings.

It's great to see Max Fordham are included with quotes in the opening pages of the document: 

  • "Fossil fuels were laid down at the rate of 1 gram / second and are now being burnt at the rate of 500 tonnes / second." ('Killer Facts', source: Financial Times
  • "44% of all the CO2 we emit now will still be around in 400 years." ('Killer Facts', source: CIBSE Journal
... and case studies of some of our projects that serve as positive examples:  
  1. Sands End (page 53, within section 2.4 'Materials')
  2. Agar Grove (page 57, within section 2.5 'Operational Energy and Carbon')
  3. Cranmer Road (page 57, within section 2.5 'Operational Energy and Carbon')
  4. National Trust HQ (page 92, within section 5 'Designing for Performance, Feedback & Closing the Performance Gap')
  5. Sahara Forest Project (page 99, within 'Resources Part 2')
  6. Oriam (page 99, within 'Resources Part 2')
  7. Bristol Old Vic (page 100, within 'Resources Part 2')
  8. Keynsham Civic Centre (page 101, within 'Resources Part 2'), case study on our website linked in the 'Resources' section

As one of the first signatories of the equivalent Building Services Engineers Declare we support this great new resource, which helps fulfil the fourth point in Architect's Declare 12-point declaration by encouraging the sharing of knowledge and research on an open source basis.