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.

Expand your positive impact:
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.

If you missed the 2020 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. 

[1 LU HSW] Adapting to Climate Change: Small Cities, Big Challenges

  • 1.  [1 LU HSW] Adapting to Climate Change: Small Cities, Big Challenges

    Posted 6 days ago
    Join the AIA Center for Communities by Design on Thursday, May 13, 2021 | 2pm EDT in a conversation around the twin challenges of climate adaptation/ mitigation and equitable communities.

    Cities are facing incredible challenges to plan effectively to reduce carbon emissions, adapt to climate vulnerabilities and achieve more equitable communities for all their residents. Many smaller communities are struggling to develop effective strategies that marshal resources and build momentum towards addressing these complex challenges. Northampton, Massachusetts and Dubuque, Iowa have frequently outperformed larger jurisdictions on these issues and have emerged as leading municipalities. Northampton was the first jurisdiction in the nation to achieve the coveted 5-STAR sustainability rating and has been the recipient of numerous related awards. Dubuque has similarly been recognized for its achievements with dozens of awards, including 5 All-America City Awards in just a dozen years for imaginative collaborations to address their key challenges. Their experiences provide insights to frame a future direction for other communities seeking to build the civic infrastructure and strategies that will lead to success. This session will present perspectives from city officials in each of these leading municipalities about the mechanics of planning for sustainable futures.  Learn more and register > 

    Want more for the Center for Communities by Design? Visit our Knowledge Net page >

    Paola Capo
    Manager, Sustainability & Communities by Design
    The American Institute of Architects
    Washington DC
    Learn more