The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on the Environment has filed an open letter for commentary and signatures on the electronic petition website iPetitions. The letter reconfirms the committee’s devotion to environmental sustainability and provides a reminder that credentialed architects have a legal requirement to “protect the health and safety of the public.”
Many people in the general population are unaware of the broader principles that guide architects and architectural design, which include the protection of housing rights, workers’ rights and the protection of open spaces.
The committee asserts that architects have an ethical duty to design buildings that reduce health risks to the public, and among these risks are environmental hazards that can be attributed to climate change.
The open letter goes on to state that government must step into a role that complements architects by protecting the health of the public and that of the environment. It is also the government’s role to lead by example by setting high performance standards and ensuring building practices in the U.S. are competitive with those around the world.
“We will work to enable fact-based decision making, advancing policies to help make our buildings the healthiest, the safest and the greatest in the world,” reads the letter, which now has more than 660 signatures and 114 comments.