We take our role in the building industry seriously and look at regenerative design, or designing for abundance, as the future of sustainability as we work collectively to lessen the impact of our industry on climate change.

Our Commitment

Our pledge is to lead regenerative and innovative design for a brighter, cleaner future. Henderson’s sustainability mission is to establish a regenerative mindset within our operations and design practice to realize solutions that restore, renew, and replenish sources of energy and materials while benefiting employees, clients, communities, and global ecological systems. As a signatory of The MEP 2040 Challenge and as a part of our Henderson 2040 Climate Pledge, we are committed to achieving net zero carbon on all projects by 2040. We understand that this is a long journey, but it’s one we’re in together and we’re committed to see through one step at a time. To support our culture of innovation and sustainability, we are intentional in the growth and development of Team Henderson to design with a sustainable and regenerative mindset.

All system engineers shall advocate for and achieve net zero carbon
in their projects: operational carbon by 2030 and embodied carbon
by 2040.

The MEP 2040 Challenge

Climate positive buildings

Our process is built on maintaining a focus on quality and the foundations of good design. Whether designing a net positive energy project or a zero carbon facility, our design process starts with analyzing site energy and resource flows followed by the fundamentals: load reduction, passive system integration, efficiency, energy recovery, and optimization between architectural and engineered. Together with Henderson Building Solutions, we’re focusing on helping clients and organizations meet their climate goals and targets by support zero carbon master planning and infrastructure transitioning.

placeholder

BUILDING ELECTRIFICATION

A zero emissions future rests on delivering buildings with all-electric heating, cooling, cooking, and water heating systems. Building electrification is the starting line for carbon negative buildings. Driving down energy costs and carbon emissions can simultaneously be achieved by optimizing the interplay of building efficiency, energy storage, renewable energy generation, and controls that respond to when the electrical grid is delivering low-carbon intensity electricity. Being able to keep the power on when the grid fails is fundamental when addressing resiliency in the built environment. Microgrids offer self-sufficient energy systems that are local, independent, intelligent, and support decarbonization goals when combined with renewable energy production and storage.

Learn more

placeholder

ZERO CARBON

Our sustainability strategic plan is to deliver carbon negative buildings where building products and operations yield net negative CO2 emissions whether through net positive renewable energy production, design for disassembly and reuse or grid integrated building design. Our energy modeling process starts in early design and continues through the final drawings to inform, support, and document designed performance. This process helps design teams make informed decisions by comparing strategies and understanding the performance of their building whether the focus is on financial, energy, or carbon emissions performance.

Learn more

placeholder

HEALTHY BUILDINGS

Spending time indoors should not mean compromising physical or mental health. Our design process focuses on delivering health positive indoor environments by focusing on the health impacts of materials installed as well as modeling building characteristics to optimize natural daylighting, views, acoustics, and the delivery of clean air to support occupant wellness. We’ve incorporated language in our base specifications that aligns with the healthy material requirements of LEED, WELL, and Living Building rating systems. It’s another seemingly small step that demonstrates the importance we place on healthy indoor environments within the spaces we help design.

Learn more

placeholder

REGENERATIVE WATER SYSTEMS

Our goal is to design water systems that mimic natural ecological systems by creating a continuous cycle of water use and treatment that eliminates the idea of waste. The foundation of good water system design is built on efficiency, reuse, and delivering high-quality water for occupants and building systems whether optimizing cooling tower design, designing a rainwater catchment system, or planning for water treatment and reuse. Water and energy are innately linked, meaning water has its own carbon footprint. Our design process includes tools that translate water use to lifecycle carbon emissions to support net zero carbon initiatives.

Learn more

placeholder

REFRIGERANT DRAWDOWN

The changing regulatory landscape is requiring our industry to look at alternatives to the traditional synthetic refrigeration systems. Sustainable refrigerant design will be a crucial component in grocery stores as they try to reduce their carbon footprint. Refrigerants are a key to unlocking significant greenhouse gas reductions. Our work in alternative, low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerant systems that use CO2 and ammonia alongside leakage control and recovery practices are contributing to substantial global emissions reductions.

Learn more

BEHIND THE DESIGN INSIGHTS

We’re an organization of smart thinkers and passionate creatives, and we love to share what we know. Scroll our thought leadership library for technical expertise, design discoveries, educational takeaways, and more from the brains behind the buildings.

Article
The Increasing Complexities of Sports Lighting
Article
New York City Local Law 97: Decarbonization and the Challenges of Going Green
Article
Exploring Computational Thinking in the AEC Industry
Article
Computational Thinking in the AEC Industry
Article
Understanding Net-Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goals and Resources
Brian Alessi

Sustainability Director | Principal

Connect
Daric Adair

Energy Modeling Technical Manager | Energy Analyst | Associate

Connect

INDUSTRY INSIGHTS, DELIVERED.

Join our email list to get the latest design innovations, technical content, new projects, and research from Henderson’s experts delivered straight to your inbox.