In latest AIA 2030 Commitment release, integrated design firm reports an average energy reduction of 78.7% across a broad portfolio of new projects in 2022, demonstrating that carbon emissions can be significantly reduced in the built environment on a large scale.
IRVINE, Calif. — (October, 3 2023) — LPA Design Studios reported a 78.7% predicted energy use reduction across more than 6.2 million square feet of projects in 2022 in the just-released AIA 2030 Commitment annual report, the key barometer of the industry’s efforts to combat climate change.
The firm achieved the 78.7% reduction — its best-ever performance — across a wide range of civic, education, healthcare, cultural and commercial projects. The average reduction for firms reporting their AIA 2030 Commitment results was 48%, according to the AIA’s new “By the Numbers” report. LPA’s 2022 portfolio featured 11 net zero energy (NZE) projects — buildings that produce as much energy as they consume — including an Austin, Texas, middle school; a Tracy, California, recreation center; and a San Bernardino, California, child development center.
LPA’s results translate to an estimated $6 million in annual energy savings for LPA clients and the elimination of approximately 12,000 metric tons of carbon emissions, compared to the average from other reporting firms.
The high-performing projects reflect LPA’s distinctive integrated design process, which emphasizes research and collaboration across disciplines, including in-house engineers, landscape architects and interior designers. The firm sets performance goals around a broad definition of sustainability — including performance, wellness, community and experience — on every project, regardless of scale or budget.
“We have been able to make significant progress by aligning building performance with our clients’ goals,” says LPA president and Chief Design Officer Keith Hempel. “Our results reflect a collaborative, inclusive approach focused on creating resilient, cost-effective and healthy places for people.”
The built environment is responsible for 42 percent of annual global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Architecture 2030 reports.
The AIA 2030 Commitment gradually raises the target for energy reduction in new projects from industry baselines, with the goal of eliminating carbon emissions from buildings by 2030. The current target is an 80% reduction. In 2018 and 2019, when the goal was 70%, LPA was the largest firm in the nation to surpass the target.
In 2022, 428 companies shared results in the AIA 2030 Commitment database, representing more than 3.8 billion gross square footage across 23,276 projects and 107 countries.
LPA’s 78.7% average reduction in 2022 represents a 10% improvement from 2020’s results (71.6%), across the largest number of new ground-up construction projects the firm has ever reported (62). In 2022, 26 LPA projects reached the 80% 2030 Commitment target, compared to 16 in 2021 and 9 in 2020; 34 included photovoltaic (PV) panels, up from 20 in 2021; and the 11 NZE projects compare to 7 in 2021 and 2 in 2020.
LPA’s 2022 data includes 900,000 square feet of interior spaces, which achieved an average 48% predicted lighting power density (LPD) reduction.“These results give us a chance to gauge our progress with the industry and see where we can do better,” says LPA Director of Sustainability and Applied Research Ellen Mitchell. “We are continually working to improve our education and processes to help clients improve efficiency, address climate change and save money.”
The 2022 results were the latest in a long line of sustainability accomplishments for LPA. Earlier this month, the firm announced the completion of its 200th LEED project, reflecting one of the largest portfolios of LEED-certified projects in the country.
About LPA Design Studios
LPA is a multi-discipline firm focused on collaboration, inclusion and an integrated design process that connects building performance and design excellence. Founded in 1965, the firm’s mission is to deliver timeless, sustainable designs that benefit the environment, generate lasting value, enrich the human experience, and ensure a better future. With six studios in California and Texas, LPA’s team includes more than 400 in-house architects, master planners, engineers, interior designers, landscape architects and research analysts, working across a wide array of sectors. In 2021, LPA was honored as AIA California’s Firm of the Year, the organization’s highest annual honor for an architectural firm. For more information, visit lpadesignstudios.com.