The American Institute of Architects (AIA) is sending a delegation of architects to attend the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland from Oct. 31-Nov. 12. 

This will be the first time AIA has formally participated as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) and an official COP observer. This is a privilege granted by the UN to certain organizations to give them an ability to participate in the organization's activities.

AIA’s focus at COP26 will be establishing new partnerships with policymakers and industry partners to ensure that we are aggressively (and jointly) moving the needle toward zero emissions. Through its engagement with COP, AIA members will share recommended resources that will assist both policymakers and practitioners with better understanding of the built environment and its impact on our climate and its inhabitants.  

“The design community is committed to addressing climate change, but we know that we can’t do it alone,” said AIA 2021 President Peter Exley, FAIA. “AIA is participating in this global convening because it is going to take the concerted efforts of both industry and government to make meaningful action on climate change.”  

Exley will be attending COP26 along with architects Julie Hiromoto, FAIA, COTE 2020 Advisory Group Chair; Mike Davis, FAIA, AIA Government Advocacy Committee Chair; and Dr. Mark Breeze, AIA, AIA UK Sustainability Chair. 

On Oct. 6, 2021, AIA joined leaders from the world’s largest and most influential architectural, engineering, and construction firms and professional organizations in issuing the 1.5°C COP26 Communiqué – a challenge to sovereign world governments to step up their commitments to reduce carbon emissions from the built environment to meet the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C carbon budget. 

"It is imperative that world leaders meeting in Glasgow fully commit to adopting aggressive building policies, incentives, and codes that meet the 1.5°C carbon budget,” said Exley. “As our nation's leaders set ambitious targets, architects are making them a reality."

Visit AIA’s website to learn more about itsadvocacy efforts.