April 22, 2022 is Earth Day, but NELSON Worldwide is committed to sustainability year round. Not only do we design projects with the environment in mind, but we have also pledged to reduce our carbon footprint in our offices across the country. Director of Sustainability, David Hincher explains our green efforts. 


Does NELSON have any specific projects (in addition to W Element) that are sustainable in design? Any LEED-certified projects? If so, please specify how the project supports a sustainable framework.

NELSON’s Philadelphia office is designed and pursuing WELL and LEED certification. Office lighting and mechanical systems are synchronized with work patterns as occupancy sensors modulate quantity of lighting and indoor air quality. Natural daylight, a living green wall, meditation room, healthy snacks, were also included to promote employee health and well-being.


Q: How does NELSON comply with local sustainability law/policy to reduce its carbon footprint?

From across all geographic regions, local energy codes, and areas of practice, we bring lessons in high performance design to minimize energy consumption in every project. Daylight monitoring, lighting-dimming controls, occupancy sensors, modulating mechanical systems, continuous insulation, low-e glazing, external shading, etc. are optimized for performance and occupant comfort.


Q: How is NELSON addressing global climate change through architecture and design? Any notable practices to highlight? Any materials that the team prefers to use?

To address climate change, NELSON focuses on minimizing energy consumption through high performance design strategies, which reduces operational carbon emissions. In addition, we look for low-carbon, healthy, natural building materials to address embodied carbon emissions. These are two key factors to mitigate climate change.

Q: What are some of the firm’s goals when it comes to supporting a sustainable built environment?

In addition to climate change mitigation, we look for opportunities to build resiliency, integrate biophilic principles, create biodiversity, and manage stormwater.