A Changing Climate

11选五遗漏查询江苏Lately, I’ve been obsessed. Like many of you, I imagine, I’ve been drawn down the rabbit hole and putting a lot of thought into global climate change, and it’s impact on the worlds in which we live and work.  From the October to November’s Black Friday surprise in the form of the , we have plenty to absorb and much to think about in terms of how climate change is impacting us, and how those impacts will continue to expand in the future.  In sum, it presents us with unprecedented challenge, and an amazing opportunity. Our work is cut out for us.

So this got me inspired. I don’t know if inspired is the right term, as that seems a bit too positive in light of some of the dire predictions put forth.  Maybe terrified is a more apt for the time?  Or maybe a better middle ground is motivated.  In this case, motivated by a desire for understanding what seems an insurmountable challenge (or as some would say the ultimate wicked problem), and translating that understanding into action-oriented, evidence-based solutions that we weave into landscape and urbanism plans and projects, as a force for positive change.

Landscape architecture is uniquely positioned in this realm due to our generative potential. The very tools at our disposal are in some ways those that best fit solutions.  In my times of despair, however, I lament that our reach isn’t far enough nor our approaches sophisticated enough to make a difference.  In my times of optimism, I feel as if we have the ability to save the world through nature-based solutions that mitigate carbon emissions and help communities adapt to the changing world.  To dispel my fears of our irrelevance, we can generate deep understanding of the issues, and what potential tools we have, and information that can inform us to develop and refine additional tools.  To amplify the potential (the save the world part), there are so many incredible parallels with the core mission of landscape architecture, our fundamental values, and ways in which we are already doing the work aligns with a range of solutions.  We just need to direct that work more specifically on climate solutions, and figure out ways to do it better, understand our impacts, aggregate co-benefits, and multiply our reach exponentially.

The issues around climate change have always percolated in my consciousness, but I had never really specifically asked the specific question:

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Having asked this question, I began looking through resources and information for guidance and how it relates to our work.  There are a few pieces, yet so far I’ve yet to see someone connect the dots in a meaningful way.  Yes, there are people doing great work here in our profession, and in the larger context of architecture, planning, and the body of science and research on this is incredible. I plan to illustrate these endeavors and highlight what we can learn from this.  From individuals to organizations, the collective work being generated is immense and wide ranging.  But somehow, I fear, it isn’t enough.

11选五遗漏查询江苏The questions from science and academia are not informing actions on the ground and stronger bonds need to be grown between research and design.  The practice is not adept at translating and assimilating this into solutions, and when we do they often end up shallow interpretations. We seem to wait for others to provide solutions, or make proclamations without substance. The climate change landscape (if you will pardon the term) seems to be at its infancy, and landscape architecture as catalysts and synthesizers have a key role in the process of regeneration, and in the end, a moral responsibility to show global leadership.

11选五遗漏查询江苏Since it’s inception, the blog has always been a way for me to process issues around landscape architecture and how they interact with and impact our design, planning, and management of landscapes in urban areas.  While the realm of online communications has blown up, and social media has changed the form of dialogue, my need to ask questions I don’t have answers for is fundamental to my growth and my journey as a landscape architect going on 22 years now.

11选五遗漏查询江苏This is, for me, in 2019, is just the next iteration of what started back in 2007, now over 11 years ago. If you’re not there or don’t want to go on this ride, I understand.  However, I hope folks like reading, and better yet, I REALLY want you to contribute thoughts, call bullshit, offer suggestions, expound on critical issues, and share brilliant ideas when the feeling strikes you.

Our approach to climate change as a key issue is defined by our  all landscapes, and the profession itself — action, informed by deep understanding, moving in a continuous state of dynamic transition and evolution.  Inspired?  Terrified?  Motivated?  Either way, join the ride.

– JK


11选五遗漏查询江苏HEADER: Sky image via

4 thoughts on “A Changing Climate

  1. This is a great post and I really look forward to your related posts in the future. Lots of people are saying that the problem of rapid loss of species and biodiversity is just as severe as climate change. I’ll be curious to see how you propose to address the two problems simultaneously in landscape design.

    1. 11选五遗漏查询江苏Thanks Carter – your comment slipped by without my noticing (i’m blaming new years). Appreciate the thoughts – and definitely agree biodiversity is a key element of discussion and interlinked with climate change. If you haven’t seen it, a recent post on Hidden Hydrology covered Richard Wellers project – – which is an interesting take.

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