Urgent appeal to government members, parliamentarians and politicians of <Country> to act and fulfill their responsibility and governmental duty of care

Call for the immediate regulation for the responsible and sustainable development of the built environment.

We citizens of <Country> are petitioning our government representatives and politicians at the local, regional, and national levels to meet their legal, political, ethical and moral obligation to protect us and our communities from scientifically-based threats and further damage to the environment.

The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently reported that threatening climate change is happening more quickly than previously anticipated and that much of the planet will soon become uninhabitable.   The IPCC warns that if radical and urgent action is not taken immediately, humanity won't limit warming to 2°C – the threshold for more devastating drought, fires, flooding, storms, and other anthropogenic environmental disasters.

Our communities are threatened by the continued destruction of the local environment and biosphere from unsustainable and irresponsible real estate development.  The built environment – buildings and infrastructure – generates nearly 50% of annual global GHG emissions and the intensive permitted land-take and rapidly expanding urban sprawl are a major concern.

While the government is ostensibly committed to reaching climate neutrality by 2040, there still are no concrete fossil fuel phase-out plans, big road and highway projects are still in place, and the rapid urbanization of the country is encouraged and permitted.  Austria is still working on national definitions of land degradation at the national level, while the unsustainable and increasing land-take and soil sealing continue to irreversibly destroy the limited land resources and environment.

The science-driven report summarizes the current understanding of observed climate change impacts on ecosystems, communities and cities, settlements, infrastructures, and industrial systems.  The report emphasizes the urgent need for radical climate action to stay in a climate safety zone below 2°C and to accelerate transformational adaptation measures.

The IPCC report highlights the vulnerabilities and future risks associated with different socioeconomic development pathways.  It illustrates the clear threat to the ecosystem by relating direct human impacts – land-use change, pollution, overexploitation, fragmentation, and degradation – to climate change.

To protect us from further irreversible harm, we are petitioning our government representatives and politicians at the local, regional, and national levels to regulate the further development of the built environment to limit the threatened drastic environmental impacts.

To limit global warming to 2°C, all stakeholders in the development of our communities are called on to ensure that buildings and infrastructure are designed in ways to minimize CO2 emissions and protect the ecosystem – land, plant life and natural habitat as much as technically possible.  This must be regulated by our government authorities and made mandatory for the further development of the built environment.

We citizens of <Country> are demanding that immediate action be taken and measures implemented by our politicians and government representatives to protect the environment and prevent the unsustainable and irresponsible use of resources for the further development of our communities.  To avoid the worst, we must use every tool and take every measure to reduce carbon emissions and protect our natural resources to prevent the threatened ecological and social-economic catastrophe.

You to whom this petition is addressed are legally, politically, ethically and morally responsible for the immediate enactment of the urgent environmental and climate policies for climate change, to meet your governmental and official responsibility and duty of care towards us.

It’s now or never if we want to limit global warming to 1.5°C”, said the co-chair of the IPCC working group that produced the report. “Without immediate and deep emissions reductions across all sectors, it will be impossible” he warns.

Suggested Supporting Information (see SEEDIS Publishings):

  • Architecture 2030. "Why the Building Sector?".
  • Gawel, Antonia, Nathan Cooper, and Lukas Bester. "The IPCC Report and the Need for Radical Climate Action". World Economic Forum. March 03, 2022.
  • Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction, International Energy Agency, and United Nations Environment Programme. "GlobalABC Roadmap for Buildings and Construction: Towards a Zero-Emission, Efficient and Resilient Buildings and Construction Sector". IEA. 2020.
  • Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. "IPCC WGII Sixth Assessment Report – Technical Summary". 2022.
  • Mulvaney, Kieran. "‘It’s Now or Never’: UN Climate Report’s 4 Urgent Takeaways". National Geographic. April 05, 2022.