Working in harmony with nature: the key to sustainability
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- Author: Charles 1
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- Source: Proceedings of the ICE - Civil Engineering, Volume 165, Issue 3, May 2012 pages 123 –128
Civil engineers need to rethink the Institution of Civil Engineers’ (ICE) nineteenth century royal charter. Instead of ‘directing the great sources of power in nature for the use and convenience of man’, it is now more important for the profession to understand and work in harmony with nature’s underlying patterns of behaviour. This paper, which is based on the author’s ICE and Halcrow sustainability lecture presented in London on 2 February 2012, argues that nature’s patterns and rhythms are what sustain it. As such, civil engineers committed to sustainability need to start being directed by nature rather than the other way around.