ClarkeHopkinsClarke is an Architectural practice established in 1960. With offices in Melbourne and Sydney we provide architecture, interior and urban design services that span the education, health, senior living & care, mixed use, multi-residential and commercial sectors, for clients across Australia and internationally.
We like to think that for a practice of 140+ people, we are small enough to move quickly on industry issues, and big enough to help drive industry change. Our focus is to positively ‘Impact Tomorrow’ through everything we do.
“We believe businesses can be both profitable and ethical and we’re proof that it works.”
Type of certification
How long have you been certified carbon neutral?
ClarkeHopkinsClarke achieved Climate Active certification in 2020.
Why did you choose to go carbon neutral?
We felt that going carbon neutral and committing to annual improvements in our carbon emissions was our responsibility as a leading architectural practice. We wanted to ensure our house was in order before asking our clients, partners and collaborators to adopt more environmentally sustainable methods in their projects.
What are the anticipated benefits of your carbon neutral certification?
- It is tangible proof that we run our office and operations in a way that is in line with the values we espouse; we ‘walk the talk’ so to speak!
- It inspires and empowers our team to live and breathe our practice mission beyond our walls and model this in their circles, thus elevating our impact.
- It allows us to initiate conversations with existing clients and attract new clients, exploring opportunities for environmentally sustainable design and creating carbon neutral places and spaces. After all, our output as architects and designers is a core measurement of our success.
What offset projects do you support?
A natural habitat protection and Indigenous environmental management project and a native forest protection project in Australia.
A community forestry program in Timor-Leste.
A biomass power generation project in China.
Why did you choose these projects?
As we have mitigated about 70% of our benchmarked carbon footprint our budget has enabled us to ‘amplify our impact’ through the purchase of gold standard carbon credits on projects that are based in Australia or our close neighbours and which target multiple UN Global Development Goals as a co-benefit.
How can consumers support you?
To organisations and businesses that commission architectural and design services: seek out opportunities to work with consultants that demonstrate a commitment to social and environmental sustainability. Prioritise people and planet as core project goals and invest in opportunities to explore better solutions.
To suppliers and consultants: be clear and transparent about the performance of your products and services, join us in a commitment to continual improvement, and help us to prove up models that show ESD is also financially beneficial for our clients at point of construction and ongoing.
To the end users of spaces and places - home buyers, parents of school age children, health service providers, small businesses: support developers and organisations who are investing in environmentally sustainable design, and demand more from those who aren’t.
What else are you doing to reduce emissions?
We contribute through industry stewardship and are proud members, participants and signatories in a number of environmental industry bodies.
Our team is also very passionate about reducing emissions. We engaged them on a “War on Waste” in mid-2019 and in the process uncovered five simple steps - most free, others very low cost - to drastically improve our recycling efforts and reduce our annual contribution to landfill by nearly one-third.
We partner with other ethical businesses to further elevate our impact.
What advice would you give to a business considering certification?
Like most businesses we were fully aware of the need to ‘do the right thing’ and were taking measures to positively address our people, our society and our environment. It soon became readily apparent that self-assessment of progress and success would not provide a sufficiently robust measure to enable ’credible’ advocacy on these issues to enable us to widen our impact. We engaged an independent consultant to rigorously analyse of the metrics of our carbon footprint and to then have their findings audited. We believe that it is important to achieve Climate Active certification as credible independent qualification of progress.