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  Sustainability in the built environment is more than just a plaque or a press release—it’s an ongoing process.

Charling Li

Planner

Vancouver, British Columbia

Charling combines the focused problem-solving approach of engineering with the big-picture and long-term thinking philosophy of planning so she can provide strategic sustainability advice to clients in the private and public sectors. To Charling, sustainability requires thoughtful planning, ongoing monitoring, and stakeholder engagement up front—she helps them understand the desired social, economic, and environmental outcomes and navigate the potential trade-offs.

Charling has a diverse and interdisciplinary background in sustainable urban development, beginning with her work as a mechanical engineer designing green building mechanical systems. She has also monitored the technical quality and consistency of over 400 LEED Canada project certifications.

In her recently completed Master’s of Urban Studies, Charling applied a social-science and planning lens to district energy policy in British Columbia’s lower mainland. She’s researched sustainable neighborhood projects and international planning frameworks in Northern Europe with a focus on social sustainability outcomes.

Charling believes that the built environment is becoming more sustainable in the long run from an environmental perspective, but that more thoughtful consideration needs to be given to the long-term social impacts associated with the sustainability movement. 

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