Architects Plan for Zero Carbon Built Environment

Architects Plan for Zero Carbon Built Environment

CLIMATE ACTION | Architects Plan for Zero Carbon Built Environment

Date :
Tuesday 28 September 2021 
1:00PM - 4:00PM AEST
Via Youtube Livestream on the Australian Institute of Architects Youtube Page


The climate crisis has never been more urgent. The latest IPCC report labelled this "humanity's code red".

How we respond to this code red is critical.

With the built environment accounting for almost 40 per cent of all carbon emissions globally, architects must take a leadership role in the race to net zero.

We invite you to join the Institute's Climate Action and Sustainability Taskforce (CAST) to hear of our progress so far on multiple fronts and to hear from international experts for this very timely half-day forum.

As a profession, we need to map out our plan of action for what architects can and should be doing - and championing - to  protect our planet.


The forum will:

  • update members on the work of the Institute's Climate Action and Sustainability Taskforce (CAST);
  • provide members with an international perspective of the action underway to combat the climate crisis, especially from and our counterparts AIA and RIBA
  • collectively outline the priorities and plan of action for the architectural profession providing content for a submission to COP26 in Glasgow in November, the Australian Government and relevant parties leading up to the next election; and
  • engage with federal parliamentarians and seek their support for the solutions architects are putting forward.

The session will include a live Q&A chat bar where audience members will have the opportunity to put questions directly to the speakers.



Professor Helen Lochhead, CAST Chair will welcome attendees, acknowledge Country and provide an overview of CAST’s work to date.

Keynote 1

Edward Mazria, Founder and CEO Architecture 2030, will provide delegates with an international situational analysis - where we are at, where they are going, what we need to do to get there.

Keynote 2

Ross Donaldson, CAST Member, will put the situational analysis in an Australian context and outline CAST's blueprint for achieving net zero by 2030.

Keynote 3

Professor Deo Prasad AO, CAST Member, will provide a summary of the tools and resources for Australian architects and our environment. He will discuss practical grassroots tactics to take climate action and tangible ways to for architectural practice to affect change.

Interactive Q&A with online audience

Panel Discussion

Representatives from federal parliament answer questions from the online audience about the policy solutions needed to arrive at net zero.

  • The Hon Chris Bowen MP, Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy
  • Zali Steggall OAM MP, Independent Member for Warringah
  • Senator Mehreen Faruqi, Australian Greens Spokesperson for Housing

Post-panel discussion and interactive questionnaire results

Moderated by CAST Chair Professor Helen Lochhead, CAST Chair with panellists Caroline Pidcock from Architects Declare and Vincent Martinez, President and COO, Architecture 2030. This is where we will unpack the responses from the political panel and get to work shaping a submission to COP26 and the Australian Government in an interactive session with online participants. We will build out the ideas discussed to date, tease out any we may have missed and formulate a plan of action to take forward.


FREE to all members and non members


Professor Helen Lochhead LFRAIA AILA MPIA RIBA(Hon) AIA(Hon) RAIC(Hon) FAICD


Helen Lochhead is an architect and urbanist who combines academic and advisory roles with practice. Her career has focused on the inception, planning, design and delivery of complex urban projects ranging from a city improvements programs to major urban regeneration and waterfront projects both in Australia and the US.

Her projects have received numerous awards including AIA and AILA Urban Design and Sustainability Awards and most recently, for the Master Plan of Sydney’s Harold Park Precinct, was awarded the AIA Lloyd Rees Award for Urban Design and the City of Sydney Lord Mayor’s Prize for urban design excellence. As well her professional contribution, she has been recognised for her leadership as one of the AFR 2019 100 Women of Influence and the NAWIC Vision Award for leadership in the construction industry.

Helen has held numerous influential roles in industry, government and universities including her current role as Pro Vice-Chancellor Precincts at UNSW Sydney and 2019-20 President of the Australian Institute of Architects where she established the Climate Action and Sustainability Taskforce (CAST) to accelerate the profession’s transition to carbon zero.

Edward Mazria - Founder and CEO of Architecture 2030 FAIA, HON. FRAIC

Edward Mazria is an internationally recognized architect, author, researcher, and educator. Over the past decade, his seminal research into the sustainability, resilience, energy consumption, and greenhouse gas emissions of the built environment has redefined the role of architecture, planning, design, and building, in reshaping our world. He is the founder of Architecture 2030, a think tank developing real-world solutions for 21st century problems, and host of the AIA+2030 Professional Education Series and inspiration for the 2030 Districts movement in North American cities.

Mazria issued the 2030 Challenge and introduced the 2030 Palette, a revolutionary new platform that puts the principles behind low-carbon/zero carbon and resilient built environments at the fingertips of architects, planners, and designers worldwide. In 2014 he presented the Roadmap to Zero Emissions at the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development and UN Framework Convention on Climate Change calling for zero emissions in the built environment by 2050, and drafted the 2050 Imperative, endorsed by professional organizations representing over 1.3 million architects in 124 countries worldwide. In 2015 he launched the China Accord, which has been adopted by key international firms pledging to plan, design and build to carbon neutral standards in China; and delivered the opening presentation at the UNFCCC COP21 “Buildings Day” titled The 2 Degree Path for the Building Sector.

Ross Donaldson