Sustainability is defined as our ability to meet our present needs without compromising the abilities of future generations to meet their own. The three Es (Economy, Ecology, and Equality) and the three Ps (People, Planet, Profit) are simple guides for sustainability as a consideration in decision-making.
These ideals can combine with 3 current pillars of architecture to come up with a new series of precepts: program, economy, operation, and harmony.
-Program describes the purpose of the building and its ability to carry out that function for the ease and comfort of those who would inhabit it. It is most concerned with people and the human element of the architectural experience.
-Economy speaks to the ability of a building to stand and is concerned primarily with its production and use of materials both physical and nonphysical. It is most concerned with the component parts of that which makes up a building and minimizing waste.
-Operation is all about the performance of a building in all of the non-human aspects, such as light, air, water, and energy. Economy and operation are strongly related and are opposite sides of the same coin; one has profound effects on the other.
-Finally, harmony is an expression of the building as a whole and how well it relates to itself, the world around it, and those who use it. It is the most subjective of the pillars and is mostly aesthetic. Similar to the relationship of economy to operation, harmony is the reciprocal of program; one is the consideration of the building unto itself, the other the consideration of the building unto the world...
In the weeks to come, these four pillars will be covered in more depth looking at the theoretical, practical, and technological ins and outs of Sustainable architecture- the International Style of the 21st century.