The following is a press release from the Seattle-based firm The Miller Hull Partnership announcing the launch of EMission Zero, an initiative aimed at eliminating emissions in the built environment and reducing Miller Hull's environmental impact. The name Emission Zero is a play on words highlighting Miller Hull's mission to reach zero emissions.
The Miller Hull Partnership, LLP, an award-winning architecture firm known for its sustainable and regenerative design, is proud to announce the launch of EMission Zero—an initiative targeting the elimination of greenhouse gas emissions in the built environment. A major component of this game-changing initiative is Miller Hull’s commitment to purchase third-party certified carbon offsets for built projects. Beyond this, EMission Zero combines the firm’s actions to reduce climate impact through Design and ongoing efforts to Educate and Advocate.
Since the firm was founded in 1977, Miller Hull has been at the forefront of ecological design. Today, Miller Hull’s dedication to environmental stewardship in architecture is linked to their commitment to climate action. Although the firm continues to work towards reducing climate impact through goal setting and design, it is clear that more needs to be done and improved at a faster rate to avoid the worst effects caused by climate change. Ron Rochon, Managing Partner at Miller Hull, explains,“Of course, we must do everything possible to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the built environment through Design, Education, and Advocacy, but that is not enough. We have to own our part of the problem.” This approach outlines Miller Hull’s best practices and public commitments for reducing carbon to reinforce accountability in every aspect of the business.
Beginning immediately, Miller Hull is committing to purchase Green-E certified carbon offsets to cover the embodied emissions of each built project upon completion. Using the tool Tally, upfront embodied carbon emissions are calculated to determine the amount of carbon offsets to purchase. Buildings are developed through the decisions and partnership of the Owner, Designer, and Contractor; within this framework, Miller Hull commits to offset their portion of every project and to advocate Owners and Contractors joining in this effort. To establish transparency, Miller Hull will publish their embodied carbon calculations and the amount and type of offsets purchased for every project on their website. Since 2006, Miller Hull has made an annual purchase of carbon offsets equivalent to their operational emissions-the emissions generated while doing their work—and will continue to account for and offset their direct operational emissions.
Beyond Offset, Miller Hull continues to reduce the carbon emissions of buildings through Design, Educate, and Advocate initiatives.
As designers, Miller Hull believes it is critical to encourage design decisions that positively impact the environment at every opportunity. Through targeting full, efficient electrification and integration of on-site renewable electricity generation, Miller Hull continues to work towards Zero Energy goals set out by the Architecture 2030 Challenge, as well as report progress annually through the AIA 2030 Commitment. And, whole building life cycle assessment is now a standard part of the design process at Miller Hull, used to evaluate projects on par with energy modeling. The incorporation of life cycle assessment into design drives the firm to advocate for building renovation and rehabilitation, as well as the use of sustainably sourced carbon-sequestering materials.
Miller Hull is sharing knowledge with as many people and in as many ways possible to prioritize climate action. This includes speaking opportunities and outreach efforts to clients, industry peers, and partners, as well as students and the public. Miller Hull performs a Gap Analysis as early as possible on every project to communicate a range of environmental performance scenarios to their clients and to demonstrate how their project can be improved to meet a regenerative design standard. The firm’s goal is to help show a clear and accessible path of what is possible, making decisions easier for clients to maintain their convictions and hold their commitments to their communities—be it constituents, students, stakeholders, or the public.
Miller Hull supports campaigns and advocates for equitable changes at all levels of government that promote stringent greenhouse gas emission requirements, including codes, carbon pricing, and other climate-related laws in the context of design and construction. Miller Hull’s staff continue to advocate for climate justice through public testimony, state law rule making, and legislative advocacy.
Worldwide, the industry is poised to build the equivalent of one New York City every month until 2060. Action must be taken to invest in a climate-smart future. As Miller Hull starts the next chapter of their environmental stewardship to create real, fundamental change, they invite all those responsible for the future of the built environment to join their commitment to action: Design, Educate, Advocate, and Offset.
Find more detailed information about the EMission Zero initiative here.