Historic cities and towns all face similar challenges to prosper in a world of climate change and environmental breakdown. Taking the example of Limerick, an 800-year-old Irish city, we look at how we can regenerate and rebuild healthy, climate resilient, carbon positive places.
To make real progress we need to stop thinking of buildings in isolation and work towards decarbonisation at a district, town and city level. Whilst it is challenging to decarbonise all existing buildings, including cultural heritage, we can still make considerable progress and make our new buildings to work even harder to offset the balance. How much can we improve our existing buildings such as inner core heritage? How do we deal with the upfront carbon* of new construction, and move to positive energy buildings?
Covid-19 shows how governments can react quickly in a radical way and bring about instant change in people’s behaviour. Can this be extended to cities? Can we quickly and radically extend space for pedestrians and cyclists, and move to universally designed cities that prioritise space for everyone over cars? Can we densify creating at the same time better use of infrastructure and resources whilst improving health and amenities for everyone.
The theme of this online conference is re-generation. Our speakers will explore the role of regeneration in creating positive energy districts and recreating healthy walkable neighbourhoods. We will also focus on the role of refurbishing historic buildings and developing carbon positive new buildings, for full decarbonisation of our cities.
This webinar is organised in partnership with the Horizon 2020 funded Build Upon 2 project. The aim of Build Upon 2 is to support local authorities in developing and implementing ambitious renovation strategies, and to commit to a highly efficient and decarbonised building stock by 2050. Helsinki is one of the latest cities to commit to the Advancing Net Zero campaign.
* Upfront emissions describe CO2 emitted during the construction of a building i.e. the carbon burp that comes from producing the materials that go into a building, transporting and assembling them.