Jeremy Knoll attends CarbonPositive '20 Conference

Jeremy Knoll, AIA, attends the CarbonPositive ’20 Conference and Expo presented by Architecture 2030 and Architect Magazine on March 2-4, 2020 in Los Angeles. This event invites architects, planners, engineers, builders, developers, and policymakers to come together in discussion of a CarbonPositive future. Attendees engage in presentations and breakout sessions to hear about topics including the Architect 2030 network, CarbonPositive design tools and material use, and leaders in decarbonization. Knoll shares his experience from the conference and expo:

Observations
DAY ONE

“Ed Mazria kicked off the CarbonPositive’20 Conference and Expo in LA, reflecting on the development of the Architect 2030 network in 2005, and what has (and has not) been accomplished in the last 15 years.

  • GDP, new building SF, energy use, and greenhouse gas emissions have been intrinsically linked for over 150 years in the USA.
  • Starting in 2005, however, energy flatlined, despite over 20% growth in new buildings and GDP, and CO2 emissions fell by over 20%.
  • This marks a clear DECOUPLING of emissions from GDP for the first time in our history! Most of the emissions reductions are directly attributable to changes in the way we design buildings, rather than the evolution of the US energy grid.
  • Globally, from 2010 through 2018, building floor area grew by over 20%, and CO2 emissions only grew by 6.5%, showing that this trend is starting to happen around the world.
  • This means we are on a good pace, but we only have 10 years to reduce global emissions, in order to keep the climate from rising to 1.5°C. 2020 must be the year of peak emissions.

Kate Simonen, Founding Director of the Carbon Leadership Forum, closed the day by highlighting emerging leaders from around the globe, and reinforcing that architects must be the trusted bridge between the technological and scientific complexity of climate change and the general public; the world understands what we do. We break complex information down to a scale that can be understood. She challenged us with 3 questions: how are you decarbonizing your life? How about your company? What about your industry?”