By Melissa Hassett
"I want to give hope for a better future," he says.
One of his green ideas is currently taking hold in Taipei, the capital of Taiwan. When Tao Zhu Yin Yuan - which stands for The Tao Zhu Retreat - is completed in September 2017, the residential complex will have planted 23,000 trees and shrubs.
Although Callebaut compares the building to an urban forest, its appearance is actually shaped by a strand of DNA, a double helix that bends 90 degrees from base to ceiling.
If all goes as planned, Callebaut says the plants will absorb 130 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions each year, the equivalent of nearly 27 cars.
Taiwan produced, in total, more than 250 million tons of CO2 in 2014, according to the International Energy Agency. Callebaut admits that his is a small step, but insists that it is "a big leap (against) global warming."
"The tower presents a pioneering concept of sustainable residential eco-construction that will help reduce the carbon footprint of its inhabitants", explains the architect.
The 21-story apartment complex is also designed for its residents to save on energy consumption. The design uses natural light and ventilation and includes a rainwater recycling system and solar panels on the roof.