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Tag archives: sustainability

Does manufacturing locally mean lower emissions?

Does manufacturing locally mean lower emissions?

Alan Davies July 1, 2013 7 Comments

The inputs used to manufacture Wimbledon tennis balls collectively travel 50,000 miles. But looking at the length of the supply chain is a poor indicator of their carbon footprint

Do Awards tell us what good architecture is?

Do Awards tell us what good architecture is?

Alan Davies May 23, 2013 7 Comments

The 2013 architecture Awards season is getting into full swing across the nation. It's timely to ask if Awards tell us much about what good architecture is or if they're just about appearances

Is public transport as green as you think?

Is public transport as green as you think?

Alan Davies December 4, 2012 21 Comments

It's true emissions from public transport aren't as low relative to cars as is popularly imagined, but the savings are still significant. And there are other good reasons to invest in worthwhile transit services.

Do rainwater tanks save water?

Do rainwater tanks save water?

Alan Davies May 3, 2012 17 Comments

Research published in the latest issue of the journal Geographical Research indicates that residents with a rainwater tank don’t reduce their consumption of mains water by any more than those without a tank. The study finds households in NSW’s Illawarra region who installed a rainwater tank reduced their consumption of mains water on average by […]

Are we really living sustainably?

Are we really living sustainably?

Alan Davies April 13, 2012 7 Comments

If we could significantly increase population densities and get many more people out of their cars and into public transport, we’d go a long way toward making our cities sustainable. We’d almost be there if we could generate most electricity from renewable resources. Or so you might think. Yet the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) disagrees. […]

Is the centre of the world the neighbourhood?

Is the centre of the world the neighbourhood?

Alan Davies March 7, 2012 14 Comments

One of the most enduring and pervasive ideas in urban policy is that cities should consist of numerous self-contained and self-sufficient neighbourhoods. With urban villages anchoring each neighbourhood, residents could work, shop, study and play locally, thereby saving on travel and building a strong sense of neighbourhood community. I’ve long been dubious about this romantic […]

Is there more to architecture than sustainability?

Is there more to architecture than sustainability?

Alan Davies March 5, 2012 5 Comments

I think it’s time to stop treating sustainability in architecture like it’s the precocious child that needs to be singled out and lavished with constant attention for fear it will shrivel up and die. We don’t single out many other performance attributes of buildings for special consideration – for example, structural integrity, economic efficiency, or […]

RMIT’s Design Hub revisited: is green turning red?

RMIT’s Design Hub revisited: is green turning red?

Alan Davies February 9, 2012 4 Comments

It seems I was right to raise concerns about the green credentials of RMIT’s new Design Hub. Following publication of my article on Tuesday, Are all green buildings really that green?, RMIT amended the description of the building on its web site earlier today. In the earlier post, I queried two major claims the University […]

Are McMansions about class warfare?

Alan Davies July 18, 2011 13 Comments

There was a very interesting trans-blog discussion over the weekend about one of my favourites topics – McMansions. It started earlier in the month when Helen at Blogger on the Cast Iron Balcony decided to “call bullshit on the popular story that criticising McMansions is equivalent to sneering at the working class, and denying them […]

Is the new Population Strategy…. strategic?

Alan Davies May 15, 2011 4 Comments

There are two things the new population strategy the Federal Government released on Friday gets right. First, it dismisses the concept of a specific population target and instead focusses on making Australia more resilient to change (I’ve discussed this before). Second, it points out that population size is not the sole cause of problems like […]