The greened southern façade, Lise-Meitner-Haus on Humboldt University's Adlershof campus; Photo: Louis Back
Ecological buildings should optimally fulfil the needs of their users without leaving behind unnecessary and irreversible burdens on nature and the environment for future generations to deal with.
When we speak of sustainability, however, the tasks are defined in a much stricter way. Ecological building, as it is understood in Berlin today, is aimed at bringing economic and socio-cultural aspects into harmony with ecological issues and ensuring a sustainable balance of all three factors. This not only leads to an expanded perspective but also underscores the fact that the principles of ecological building are dynamic and are subject to change. Once one of the three areas in the 'sustainable triad' is altered, the ideas and principles must also be adapted and updated.
In this respect ecological building is comparable to a continuous deliberation process in which competing goals need to be evaluated and appropriately considered against the background of current developments and continuous intensification.