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September 4, 2016 | by  | in News | [ssba]

Unsustainable hypocrisy at Te Aro campus

A Victoria University architecture student has started a petition to install solar panels on the roof space at Te Aro campus.

Fourth-year landscape architecture student, Matthew Stone, launched the change.org petition to encourage the Faculty of Architecture and Design to convert to a more sustainable form of energy consumption at the Te Aro campus.

Stone claims the courses taught by the faculty promote the value of “innovative and sustainable” architectural models. Despite this, there has been no change in the school’s energy consumption to reflect this.

He believes that the current cosmetic upgrade at the campus is lacking sustainable technology and “is not being conducted in accordance with the high standards we would expect from our lecturers and mentors.” The petition lists four reasons as to why the changes should be made.

Sustainable design concepts can be integrated into the renovation process, the petition claims, as it is still in the development process.

The school’s carbon neutral reputation is “unjustified without any sustainable systems in place.”

“The roof has a wide range of potential uses, and a space is needed which reflects the values taught by the faculty to enable students to “make a difference in our professions and in our communities.”

Stone’s idea is to create a building that is as ambitious as its students when it comes to the environmentally conscious movement within the design industry.

One of the university’s areas of distinctive academic emphasis is “enhancing the resilience and sustainability of our natural heritage and capital.” Initiatives such as a recycling scheme and a carbon neutral certification are proof of this.

The petition is supported by the Dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Design, Robin Skinner, and has 226 signatures, at the time of writing, with Stone encouraging more to sign in order to achieve funding for the initiative.

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