Committee on the Environment (COTE)

The committee reflects the profession's commitment to provide healthy and safe environments for people, and is dedicated to preserving the earth's capability of sustaining a shared high quality of life.

COTE's mission is to lead and coordinate the profession's involvement in environmental and energy-related issues, and promote the role of the related issues and promote the role of the architect as a leader in preserving and protecting the planet and its living systems.

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In response to the Hurricane Harvey the Texas Society of Architects in Austin hosted 2 training day sessions for architects last week. "Post-Disaster Safety Assistance Program (SAP) provides architects, engineers, building officials and inspectors with the knowledge to provide evaluation of facilities, buildings and infrastructure in the aftermath of a disastrous event." "After successfully completing AIAs SAP training, eligible individuals will earn a California issued OES certificate and SAP ID card." Safety Assessment Program trainings

While currently, professionals in private practice would be unpaid, the volunteer time could be 10 days. For all who are government employees the hardship can be eliminated if officials give permission and they most likely will. The other side of the coin is unskilled "inspectors" recruited to do the job.

This training in Resilience should be mandatory for all architects and be set up with drilled teams of volunteers already organized in readiness. Local, county, state and federal organizations have the ability and Homeland Feds tied to them, for this to be like army reserves or volunteer fire brigades, hopefully used with much less frequency. We all know the need is not just Texas, it is national and global. Hurricane Irma is doing its worst right now so reciprocation is inevitable, not only for hurricanes, it is shocking to see how many disasters are occurring every year.
The AIA is a driving force to establishing the legitimate SAP certified teams nationwide and offer professional assistance to governments. If AIA national is working with FEMA, it only takes AIA chapters to train up and work with local governments.


Co-Chair: Kendall Claus, Assoc. AIA, LEED AP