Committee on the Environment


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Who we are

The Committee on the Environment (COTE®) is an AIA Knowledge Community working for architects, allied professionals, and the public to achieve climate action and climate justice through design. We believe that design excellence is the foundation of a healthy, sustainable, and equitable future. Our work promotes design strategies that empower all AIA members to realize the best social and environmental outcomes with the clients and the communities they serve.

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Engage in our advocacy efforts. Enjoy our latest on COTE news (and follow us on Twitter).

To learn about the Framework for Design Excellence (formerly the COTE Top Ten Measures), click here.

Did you miss the 2021 Top Ten Toast, download a recording here. 

A big thank you to our partners: 
Founding partner: Building Green
Premier partners: Kingspan, Sherwin-Williams
Sustaining partners: GAF Roofing, KawneerLucifer Lighting Company, ROCKWOOL
Green partners: AutodeskEPIC MetalsHKSThornton Tomasetti, Skanska
Allied partners: TLC Engineering

GAF x COTE: Looking at the Future

This 2019 video was compiled by GAF, a COTE sponsor. 

Partner Content: Top Ten Winners with EPIC Products

By Paola Capo posted 10-16-2020 02:38 PM

[From COTE sponsor EPIC Metals]

The AIA awards the COTE Top Ten awards each year to projects that embody holistic design excellence. Through its dedication and commitment to sustainability, EPIC Metals, a steel roof and floor deck ceiling manufacturer has supplied systems to nine Top Ten projects awarded in the last several years.


In 2020, the U.S. Land Port of Entry, Columbus, New Mexico project was selected as a Top Ten award winner. One judge commented that “a port of entry is a challenging building type. The designers in the project not only met the challenge, but achieved more by showing us how the architecture of any kind can make human environments healthy and dignified,” further commenting that it is a “thoughtful, durable building made to last.” EPIC’s Envista® F4.5A is installed in this project.


The following additional projects that EPIC Metals supplied roof or floor deck ceiling systems were selected as COTE Top Ten projects:

During 2019, EPIC Metals became a Green Level Sponsor of COTE. Epic has supplied roof and floor deck ceiling systems to 338 LEED certified projects in forty states. EPIC’s products have an industry Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) by UL and many of our paint finishes can achieve a Declare Status of Red List Free. EPIC in 2010 added solar panels to the roof of its Main Office located outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and in 2014 became the first in the industry to manufacture steel roof and floor deck ceiling panels with solar power. In 2015, EPIC was the first manufacturer to use 3 WindStax® vertical axis wind turbines to generate electricity at one of its manufacturing locations.


EPIC Metals advocates the use of electric vehicles, and has installed seven SemaConnect® electric vehicle charging stations for their employees and visitors. Through August 2020 these EPIC charging stations in theory displaced the use of 5,649 gallons of gasoline.  Through August 2020 EPIC has harvested 1,801,154 kWh of solar energy (enough to drive an electric car the circumference of the earth 158 times, a distance of 3,934,358 miles!).


The achievements that EPIC Metals has made would not have been possible without the architectural community’s continued specification of EPIC roof and floor deck ceiling systems. We at EPIC Metals are thankful to the architects that continue to specify EPIC products enabling us to evolve into a more sustainable company each year.