A cooler planet by design

URL: http://www.swinburne.edu.au/chancellery/mediacentre/media-centre/news/2013/01/a-cooler-planet-by-design

Date posted: Thursday 17 Jan 2013

A cooler planet by design 

By Ken Friedman, University Distinguished Professor at Swinburne University of Technology.

From hot property to unwanted waste: it's time to rethink the way we design, produce and reuse new products.

Many of us get frustrated with the slow pace of international action on climate change. But powerless as we feel, we can still make a difference by rethinking the way we design our lives.

Design is rarely considered when talking about climate change, yet is a significant factor in the economic activities and political decisions that are driving emissions higher.

The World Bank's Turn Down the Heat report warns of the consequences of global temperatures rising by an average of four degrees Celcius by the end of this century.

Let us be clear about one thing - the prospect of a four-degree rise is a conservative prediction.

Many equally reasonable scientists believe it is likely we will face more dangerous changes than that, sooner than we think.

This is where designers and their employers, as well as consumers, have to share responsibility for dealing with climate change.