Brown Matthews Architects is committed to the principle of sustainable development and responsible environmental and ecological design with the aim of improving building quality for owners and users. In environmental terms, it is considered the primary root of degradation ultimately results from unsustainable energy usage. Brown Matthews's main policies to act on this principle are:
- Use of high embodied energy or non-recyclable construction materials.
- Use of fossil fuel based energy in both the construction and operation of buildings.
- Use of low embodied energy and / or recyclable construction materials.
- Use of renewable and / or "free" energy sources in both the construction and operation of buildings
- Secondary sources for degradation result from factors including poor internal spaces; social upheaval and community failure; a reduction in bio-diversity; air; water and soil pollution (additional to energy related).
Brown Matthews's initial policies to act on these principles are:
- Use of artificial light and ventilation to internal spaces
- Buildings and spaces with no capacity to accommodate alternative uses
- Unnecessary use of green filed sites and construction of new buildings
- Imposition of generic building solutions disregarding vernacular experience and local community input.
- Buildings in sensitive environmental areas and those buildings which reject the local environment.
- Use of main water supply when not necessary.
- Use of controlled natural light and ventilation to internal spaces
- Flexible buildings capable of adapting to new uses
- Re-use of brown field sites and refurbishment of existing structures
- Liaison with end-users to form bespoke building solutions for the benefit of occupiers and local communities
- Consideration of preservation and incorporation of local flora and fauna in the design and operation of buildings
- Use of grey water recycling