Treehugger article on IPCC report by Mike Eliason

Over on Treehugger, Larch Lab’s Michael Eliason has an article outlining some of the notable highlights from the built environment chapters of the IPCC’s Working Group III report on climate change mitigation.

We have the tools and the pathways to meet our climate goals. We need comprehensive leadership, with strong policies and corresponding funding in place. Working rapidly to mitigate climate change will require systemic transformations of our built environments. The resulting interventions will have a knock-on effect with co-benefits, ultimately resulting in more livable and more sustainable cities.

- Michael Eliason, Larch Lab

Larch Lab’s Eliason live-tweeted his reading of the IPCC’s chapters on urban systems, buildings, and transportation. While much of the report wasn’t surprising – we know what we need to do, we just need to actually do it (and rapidly) – it did elevate the importance of how we are incorporating its findings into our own work. Eliason’s article also highlights what we are calling the ‘five Cs’:

  • Compactness (cities and buildings for more walkable, car-optional neighborhoods)
  • Carbon Lock-in (avoiding it!)
  • Curbing Car-centricity
  • Co-benefits
  • Co-housing
The report also highlighted the multitude of co-benefits that will be realized in aiming to meet our climate goals, and adapting to a changing climate. For example, there are numerous benefits for de-prioritizing cars in cities – more space for residents and businesses to thrive, more green in the city, space for blue-green infrastructure, safer streets, better mobility, and a plethora of positive public health outcomes. As we highlighted last week, it also noted the relevance for community-oriented forms of housing like coops, baugruppen, and co-housing to reduce resource consumption, as well as combat the loneliness crisis.

We are looking forward to the robust discussions about housing, livability, and qualities of urbanity that we can improve by incorporating and prioritizing the pathways identified in the IPCC’s report. If you’re interested in discussing these issues, or other issues around decarbonized buildings, family-friendly housing, and climate adaptation – please contact us.

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