Singapore – On 10 January 2020, Hassell was one of the founding members of Architects Declare in Singapore, the first country in Asia to launch the petition.
Although somewhat protected by its equatorial location and its “City in a Garden” policies, Singapore has also been experiencing the twin crises of climate breakdown and loss of biodiversity with increasing periods of drought and higher temperatures.
The climate emergency is the most serious issue of our time, and the construction industry plays a major part – accounting for nearly 40 percent of energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions while also having a significant impact on our natural habitats. Architects Declare is a global petition sitting under the umbrella Construction Declares, uniting all strands of the construction and built environment industry. It is both a public declaration of our planet’s environmental crises and a commitment to take positive action in response to climate breakdown and biodiversity collapse.
Singapore is the first Asian country to join Architects Declare with both architects and structural engineers as founding signatories.
The founding members are:
Architects: CSYA, DP Architects, Forum Architects, Guz Architects, Hassell, SCDA and WOHA.
Structural engineers: Arup, DP Engineers, RSP, Web Structures and WSP.
“The Declaration provides another impetus for critical conversation on how we can mitigate climate impacts through better and more sustainable design practices,” said Hassell Managing Director, Steve Coster.
This Climate Declaration is a call to action for everyone working in construction and the built environment to meet the needs of our societies without breaching the earth’s ecological boundaries. This will demand a paradigm shift in our behaviour. If we are to reduce and eventually reverse the environmental damage we are causing, we will need to re-imagine our buildings, cities and infrastructures as indivisible components of a larger, constantly regenerating and self-sustaining system.
“It’s our responsibility to design today for the needs and threats facing the next generations. Resilience should be a core preoccupation of our profession, and come up in any conversation we have about good design,” said Singapore-based Hassell Head of Design, Fiona Nixon.
Hassell signed the petition in the UK in May 2019 and in Australia in July 2019. Australia was the third country in the world to launch Architects Declare and the first to include reference to Indigenous peoples.