Adapted from “Building Design Online” by Anthony Thistleton

’The Whole system at the moment is stacked against doing the right thing’

We must stop fetishising shiny new developments and instead demand regulation to make it harder to build “bad buildings”, architects and built environment specialists have told COP26.

Financial incentives including changes to taxation, mandatory whole-life carbon assessments, a presumption in favour of using bio-materials and not digging deep foundations and radical cross-industry collaboration were among the changes required, the event hosted by the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) heard.

The easiest option for a new building should always be the net zero one – but that is still not the case, said Victoria Burrows, a director at the World Green Building Council.

“The breakthrough moment we need to get to is how do we make it much harder to build bad buildings?” she asked.

It requires “nothing less than a complete transformation” of the way we design, build and value buildings, she added.

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