Place and Time
It is our aspiration that engineers will continue to be leaders in the move-
ment toward the use of wise, informed, and economical sustainable devel-
opment. This should begin in our educational institutions and be founded
in the basic tenets of the engineering profession and its actions.
National Academy of Engineering 1
The terms green engineering , green architecture , and sustainable design are often linked
in the literature. Among the common themes is the concern about space.
Although the various design professions approach spatial concepts in different
ways, they all work within a particular sphere of influence, bounded by space.
Environmental conscientiousness evolved in the twentieth century from a
peculiar interest of a few design professionals to an integral part of every en-
gineering disciple. In fact, one of the most important macroethical challenges
for engineers is to provide more sustainable designs. Recall that the U.S. Envi-
ronmental Protection Agency defines green engineering as “the design, commer-
cialization and use of processes and products that are feasible and economical
while reducing the generation of pollution at the source and minimizing the
risk to human health and the environment.” 2 Green engineering asks the de-
signer to incorporate “environmentally conscious attitudes, values, and principles,
combined with science, technology, and professional engineering practice, all di-
rected toward improving local and global environmental quality.” 3 However, the
design must also be feasible and must adhere to the first canon of engineering
practice: holding paramount the safety, health, and welfare of the public. One
of the principles of “green engineering” is recognition of the importance of