Friday, March 6, 2020

Planners and Extinction Rebellion

Anybody who has been involved in non-violent direct action (a rebellion) to bring the climate emergency to the attention of government and the public would have seen scientists and doctors against climate change dressed in appropriate garb and explaining why their specialist knowledge motivates them to take to the streets.

Planners have specialist knowledge of the impacts that urban developments are having in terms of carbon emissions (embodied in construction and in operation) and on local ecology- or they should have.  This applies to those promoting developments and those employed in dealing with applications.  However, planners do not appear on the streets as such, either because they are unconcerned about these impacts or regard NVDA as futile or not what they do.

Given that the use and development of land and buildings is directly or indirectly responsible for about 50% of carbon emissions (and significant biodiversity loss) the absence of planners (as such) is very disappointing.  When the public is becoming increasingly aware of the  threat of climate change there is little chance of the reputation of the planning profession being enhanced while the planning system is known to be complicit in carbon emissions increasing and its members stand and stare and shrug their shoulders.  Any planner who feel like showing that they care about what is being done with permissions being granted through a system of which they are part should get in touch.

NB The Royal Institute of British Architects has declared a climate emergency but architects have  not been conspicuous on the streets of London.

1 comment: