I have mentioned the Architecture 2030 programme here before. (An American programme to reduce carbon levels in construction and use of ALL buildings by 2030, 5 years ahead of the predicted point of irreversible damage when carbon emissions are predicted to hit 450ppm – they are currently at 380 something.)
Architecture 2030 is very focused on removing existing and halting planned coal power plants in the states ( and elsewhere) as the single biggest contribution we can make.
Today they placed a full page ad in the New York Times. Although obviously focusing on the states the ad carries some strong messages for the built environment generally.
Have we, here in the UK , stopped to think of the relationship between coal power stations, our built environment, and the use of energy within buildings that continues to ‘justify’ the continuation of these power stations to generate electricity. Just think of our typical night time cityscapes – illumination from empty buildings, lighting and other unnecessary illuminations, nearly all pulling power from coal power stations, and thereby needlessly increasing carbon emissions.
According to the BAA Campaign for dark skies – the amount of additional carbon dioxide pumped into the atmosphere due to inefficient UK street-lights in the last 12 month is 540,271 tonnes. (That’s the British Astronomical Association . not the other BAA). (and that’s just street lights?)