Carbon landscape pioneer Craig Pocock, Principal Landscape Architect in Beca Design Practice, has been confirmed as a keynote speaker on day one of the 58th International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) World Congress Gwangju 2022.Held 31 August to 2 September in Gwangju, Korea, the theme of this year’s congress is ‘Re:Public Landscape’. The comprehensive programme includes a focus on climate-sensitive landscape design and planning, cultural diversity and social inclusiveness, public leadership and stewardship of the profession, and resiliency by design.
Craig’s keynote address on the ‘carbon landscape’ could not come at a more critical time for the profession, and planet. Craig coined the term carbon landscape back in 2006, to focus on the potential carbon cost of urban and landscape design, implementation, and management, and the disproportionately high carbon cost of urban renewal of public spaces.
“We have a problem not easily addressed; the carbon reality is that most urban spaces, public realm, and urban parks, come with a significant carbon debt that is unsustainable to offset or mitigate,” says Craig.
“This means most of our current urban design projects including green infrastructure projects have a carbon footprint that not only is almost impossible to offset, but has actually increased over the last two decades, in some cases five-fold. Fundamentally, we are currently going the wrong direction from a climate change perspective.”
Craig’s keynote address will be a new highlight on his now more than 18-year journey to advocate for the carbon landscape and low carbon design, and challenge the status quo.
In 2007, Craig challenged the IFLA design community at the 44th IFLA World Congress in Malaysia, by highlighting the carbon impact of the landscape industry, challenges in mitigating those carbon impacts and ultimately its role in addressing climate change.
In 2015, Craig was made a fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects for his research into the carbon impact of landscape design. In 2016 he was placed on the IFLA advisory panel to advise on the impact of landscape architecture on climate change.
“It has been a journey with more than its share of challenges and setbacks over many years, but the carbon landscape has become an internationally accepted climate design theory. I am proud now to push this carbon kaupapa forward on the global stage, and that its significant international impact came from New Zealand design DNA,” says Craig.
Joining Beca in 2019, and leading its Wellington Design Practice studio, Craig is a highly accomplished landscape architect, researcher and published writer who has worked across New Zealand, Jordan, India, Australia and the United States. Over his 28+ year career, in addition to championing the carbon landscape, his projects have ranged from city growth and earthquake recovery planning, subdivision master planning, streetscape detailing, to fine art ‘green walls’.
Craig’s work and leadership in the carbon landscape space is well aligned with the sustainability focus at Beca, and the company vision to make everyday better through working together with clients, partners and colleagues, to actively measure and reduce carbon emissions. For more on sustainability at Beca, visit www.beca.com/sustainability