Britain’s housing accounts for over 25% of our energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. That’s more than industry, road transport or aviation. So, if we are to tackle anthropogenic climate change, we need to find new ways of building and heating our homes. I’ve written several features on innovative green architecture, from alternative building materials, such as hemp, bamboo and greener cement to enhancing biodiversity and copying nature – biomimicry – to help us design better. If those links don’t work, you may have to register with the FT website which is free and allows you access to a certain number of articles each month.

Worldwide travel, and perhaps a childhood in a 400-year old thatched cottage with thick walls of chalk, flint, wattle and daub, have led to an interest in vernacular architecture, from which we can learn many tips about how to keep warm – or cool – without using fossil fuels to do so. I’ve written several small features on vernacular – typically local, domestic – architecture around the world, from Croatia to Colombia. You can read some on the ‘Small World columns’ page.

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