BRE boss David Strong has blasted modern skyscrapers as a 'depressing statement of man's arrogance over nature' and urged university boffins to beef up eco-design courses.
Using Nightingale Associates' recent sustainability conference as a platform to decry the 'extinction' of architecture and environmental design, BRE managing director Strong said a green curriculum had 'never been needed more'.
He said: 'It's hugely disappointing that these courses, which were highly successful in training architects and engineers to work as an integrated interdisciplinary team, are now very rare - universities need to start getting these courses off the ground again.'
Strong called for a radical rethink in building design, insisting energy consumption could be cut by up to 80 per cent through sustainable design.
He urged architects to take 'lessons from nature' by following a design strategy called biomimicry, whereby designers work with nature rather than against it.
Architects, said Strong, should be taking greater care in designing climate-adaptive buildings with indigenous materials. It was also the responsibility of designers 'to bring customers to task' on the installation of air conditioning in modern buildings, he said.by Clive Walker