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Climate Action

Landscape Architecture: A Solution to the Climate Crisis

Explore resources related to climate action, organized by type:  

Commitments | Policy Recommendations | Case Studies | Awards | Resource Guides | News | Federal Advocacy | Education
 
Landscape architects plan and design with nature to help all communities reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to a changing climate. Landscape architects use climate positive design approaches that transform parks and open spaces into natural carbon sinks. They develop resilient nature-based solutions that reduce the impacts of extreme heat; coastal, ground, and inland flooding; sea level rise; pollution; and wildfires. They also increase biodiversity and protect and restore ecosystems, which underpin life on Earth.

Their highly diverse climate work ranges in scale from a site to a street, neighborhood, district, city, county, and region. At all scales, landscape architects improve the long-term health and resilience of communities by planning and designing in concert with ecosystems. They also plan and design walkable, transit-oriented environments, with safe, healthy, and active transportation systems that reduce reliance on cars. They integrate artful green infrastructure that improves water quality, manages flooding, and reduces dangerously high urban temperatures.

Landscape architects are uniquely qualified to design vibrant, resilient, equitable, and just communities for all through their education in environmental and social sciences and the use of cutting-edge technologies. Landscape architects join together with other planning, architecture, engineering, and ecology professionals and allied organizations to call for more ambitious climate action on the part of local, state, and national governments.   


Commitments

Architecture 2030 1.5°C COP26 Communiqué

In 2021, ASLA joined Architecture 2030's 1.5°C COP26 Communiqué, which calls for all sovereign governments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 65 percent by 2030 and achieve zero emissions by 2040. ASLA, IFLA, and organizations representing the planning and architecture professions, as well as 60 of the world’s largest international design firms, have committed to taking specific actions to achieve the same levels of emission reductions.

 

We Are Still In Declaration

In 2018, ASLA and its 15,000 members became one of 63 cultural organizations to sign the We Are Still In Declaration, demonstrating the depth of landscape architects' commitment to climate action. Some 3,800 leaders representing 70 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) and 65 percent of the population have signed the declaration, committing to the goals outlined in the Paris Agreement and America’s contribution to it.

 


Policy Recommendations

Smart Policies for a Changing Climate

In 2017, ASLA and its member leadership took the lead and convened a panel of diverse landscape architects and representatives from allied professions, which resulted in a report that offers 36 policy recommendations across five areas to federal, state, and local policy-makers. Six core planning and design principles guide the recommendations.

 


Case Studies

Easy to understand case studies outline how landscape architects plan and design nature-based solutions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase communities' resilience to climate shocks. These case studies were made possible through multiple grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).

Smart Policies for a Changing Climate: Case Studies  

Explore 30 case studies that demonstrate how landscape architects help communities become more resilient to sea level rise, flooding, extreme heat, and wildfires.

 
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Designing Our Future: Sustainable Landscapes

Explore 40 case studies that demonstrate how landscape architects are leaders in sustainable landscape design. Sustainable planning and design, which preserves, develops, and enhances natural resource for future generations, is the basis of any climate solution.

 
 


Professional and Student Awards

The ASLA professional awards honors the best planning, design, research, and communications work of the landscape architecture profession. The ASLA Student Awards honor the best creative work of emerging leaders in the profession. Explore hundreds of award winners from 2019 to 2005 that offer smart climate solutions and improve the sustainability and resilience of communities around the world.

ASLA Professional Awards

Browse and search for best practice landscape planning and design solutions to climate change.

 
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ASLA Student Awards

Browse and search for innovative plans, designs, and community service projects that imagine new solutions to climate change.

 


Resource Guides

Landscape architects plan and design smart climate solutions at all scales and across project types. ASLA's popular resource guides include hundreds of vetted projects, case studies, and reports. The guides are rooted in ASLA's public policies, and many are shaped by advisory groups of leading landscape architects.

Climate Change Mitigation

Resilient Design

 

Green Infrastructure

 

Transportation

 

Sustainable Residential Design

 

Sustainable Urban Development

 

News

Explore news articles that explain in depth how landscape architects plan and design climate solutions. Browse and search hundreds of articles and interviews.

 

Federal Advocacy

Guided by the policy priorities of its members, ASLA's Government Affairs team has been a strong advocate on Capitol Hill for legislation that makes communities more resilient to climate change. ASLA also advocates for climate-smart policies and regulations to a range of Federal agencies. Current legislative priorities include: the Living Shorelines Act, Safeguarding America's Future and Environment (SAFE) Act, and the Environmental Justice Act.

 

Education

Landscape architects educate the public and K-12 students and teachers about the ecological, social, and economic impacts of the climate crisis. Educational resources created by members focus on how to plan and design real-world solutions that increase sustainability while making communities more resilient to change.

Sketchup Animations and Companion Educational Guides

Educational

Explore SketchUp Animations

Explore Educational Resource Guides (K-12)

With the NEA's support, ASLA produced a series of 10 short educational SketchUp animations with Daniel Tal, FASLA, on landscape planning and design solutions to climate change. Each has a companion educational guide featuring games, curricula, and other resources for K-12 teachers and students.

 

ASLA Conference on Landscape Architecture

Annual Conference

Explore ASLA Conference Educational Sessions

Approximately 25 percent of ASLA member-created educational sessions relate to climate change, resilience, and sustainability.

 

ASLA Online Learning

Online Learning

Explore Online Learning

Approximately 30 percent of ASLA member-created webinars relate to climate change, resilience, and sustainability.

 

Contact

ASLA General Inquiries:
info@asla.org  

ASLA Center Event
Space Inquiries: 
Kelli Bland
kbland@asla.org

PR Inquiries:
communications@asla.org  

Diversity, Equity,
and Inclusion
Lisa Jennings
Manager, Career Discovery
and Diversity
ljennings@asla.org 

Donations to the ASLA Fund: 
DonateToday@asla.org  

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