Regenerative Materials, Bruce King, Founder & Director, Ecological Building Network

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Bruce King will introduce the Regenerative Materials session at our Symposium on September 22




Can the design and construction of new buildings help solve the climate crisis? Authors Bruce King and Chris Magwood reply hopefully, further explaining the science, analytics, and ethics of “carbon-smart architecture.” The authors define this approach as the design of buildings that absorb more greenhouse gases (GHGs) than they emit or that have “the smallest possible lifetime footprint” (p. xiv). For example, buildings can be constructed of carbon-sequestering plant-based materials such as mass timber, bamboo, hemp, algae, and other agricultural crops and byproducts that tip scales toward net-zero carbon emissions. The authors also promote other methods of minimizing emissions, such as specifying low-carbon concrete and technological advancements to enable lower carbon steel production, among other proposed changes in design and construction practices.

This large paperback is aimed at informing and inspiring designers and builders, as well as a general audience. The tone of Build Beyond Zero is a kind of folksy wisdom and advocacy reminiscent of progressive radio commentator Jim Hightower. The authors proffer industry advice on new building technologies, cover the basic science of building materials and their relationship to CO2 emissions, and offer sermons on why we must build more just and regenerative systems.

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