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Upcoming event

10th Carbon Crunch

A systems approach to climate change: reduction and resilience

18 October 2022
Institution of Civil Engineers, One Great George Street, London

Our 10th annual Carbon Crunch event on Tuesday 18 October saw a packed day of presentations and discussion on the twin challenges of decarbonisation and climate resilience. The main theme of the day was systems thinking, and how cross-industry collaboration, supported by the right enablers, can unlock progress against these system-wide outcomes.

We heard a keynote address on resilience from Emma Howard Boyd (Chair of the Green Finance Institute and former chair of the Environment Agency) while other sessions during the day explored themes of finance, data, and industry standards. Speakers from a host of organisations shared their knowledge and experiences, including the Department for Transport, the UK Infrastructure Bank, SBTi, CCRI, HS1, the Infrastructure Projects Authority, Skanska, Arup, National Grid, the Environment Agency, Anglian Water, Great British Railways, Climate Ready Clyde, and the Connected Places Catapult.

Many thanks to all of our speakers and attendees for their contributions on the day.

Image credit: Elyse Marks

Agenda

Morning session
Carbon management and reduction 10.00-12.45

The morning agenda featured practitioners from a number of leading organisations who shared insight into how they are meeting carbon management and reduction challenges and implementing best practice in line with the PAS2080 standard. Delegates heard inspiring practical examples and experience related to the use of digital tools, transformation route maps, the role of high-quality offsetting, managing carbon in the supply chain, and how to work collaboratively within organisations and with external stakeholders to bring about systemic change.

10.00-10.10 Welcome and introduction

Cathy Travers

Group managing director, Mott MacDonald

We commenced the morning with a reflection on the 10 years of the Carbon Crunch event and the power of collaboration, including the journey from the Infrastructure Carbon Review to PAS2080 and the Net Zero Infrastructure Industry Coalition.

10.10-11.00 PAS 2080: Reduce carbon with confidence 

Simon Dawes

Head of sustainable business strategy, Environment Agency

Maria Manidaki

Technical director, Mott MacDonald

Heleni Pantelidou

Associate director - infrastructure, Arup

Christine Glew

Sustainability manager, National Grid Gas Transmission & Metering

In this session delegates heard about the revision to the PAS2080 specification, including hearing from asset owners on their carbon journey and an overview of the major changes from representatives of the author team, and some leading client organisations on why the industry needs the revision and the impact that it can have.

11.00-11.20 Break

11.20-11.35 Deep decarbonisation for the construction sector

Adam Crossley

Director of environment, Skanska

PAS2080 approaches are an essential component for delivering net zero construction, and indeed Skanska were the first major contractor to become PAS2080 verified. However, Adam explored the challenges to deliver true net zero construction that will require more than just construction industry collaboration, with deep decarbonisation requiring more government intervention, industry coordination and investment.

“As an industry we have a decarbonisation blindspot. We are good at carbon value engineering – making changes that cost little – but avoid thinking about the much more costly ‘deep decarbonisation’ that will be required to fully decarbonise projects and systems.” – Adam Crossley, director of environment, Skanska

11.35-11.50 Financing the net zero transition

Tim Young

Manager, net zero finance, Science Based Targets Initiative

SBTi have become the leading standard for companies to use to set and validate emissions reductions targets. In this session delegates heard how the work SBTi is doing to develop net zero standards for financial institutions will impact financed emissions how this is relevant for infrastructure delivery.

11.50-12.40 Panel discussion – what do the next 10 years look like?

Chair
Mimi Zimmer

Senior carbon management consultant, Mott MacDonald

We closed the morning decarbonisation session with a panel discussion on what the key issues will be over the next decisive decade of action, with industry leaders being challenged by an early career professional on these issues and how the industry will respond.

Panellists
Giorgia Albieri

Head of infrastructure carbon, infrastructure, efficiency and engineering,
Department for Transport

Hariom Newport

Head of environment and sustainability, Infrastructure and Projects Authority

David Riley

Head of carbon neutrality, Anglian Water

Mark Enzer OBE FREng

Strategic advisor, Mott MacDonald, and lead author of the Infrastructure Carbon Review

12.40-12.45 Decarbonisation session close 

12.45-13.30 Networking lunch

Afternoon session
Climate resilience and integrated action 13.30-16.00

In the afternoon we took a detailed look at how action to improve infrastructure resilience can be integrated with carbon reduction in a fully joined-up response to climate change. Delegates heard the latest thinking on how to quantify the benefits of resilience and include these in the business case for investment; learnt about cutting-edge approaches that can help secure their assets and systems for the future; heard public and private sector perspectives on financing resilient infrastructure; and a discussion on how systems thinking can help to embed resilience.

13.30-13.40 Welcome and introduction

Denise Bower OBE

External engagement director, Mott MacDonald

Denise introduced the inaugural climate resilience session at Carbon Crunch, setting out the rationale for considering climate resilience alongside decarbonisation in the infrastructure sector.

13.40-13.55 Keynote address

Emma Howard Boyd CBE

Co-chair, Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment (CCRI), Chair of the Green Finance Institute and former Chair of the Environment Agency

Drawing on her former role as Chair of the Environment Agency and current roles as Chair of the GFI and co-Chair of CCRI, Emma set out the case for increasing investment in resilience now, highlighting what is required to ensure all infrastructure investments incorporate physical climate risks and advance climate resilience.

“In some respects, focusing on climate resilience now is 10 years too late. But there’s still time; there has to be.” – Emma Howard Boyd CBE

13.55-14.30 Panel discussion – From assessment to investment

Chair
Zoe Duvall

Senior consultant and PCRAM development lead, Mott MacDonald

Panellists
Alexandre Chavarot

Strategic adviser, Coalition for Climate Resilient Investment

Richard Thorp

Engineering director, HS1

Iliana Lazarova

Head of ESRG, UK Infrastructure Bank

14.30-14.45 Break

14.45-15.30 Using systems thinking to deliver climate resilience – case studies

Sarah Hayes, Strategic engagement lead of CReDo, Connected Places Catapult

CReDo – collaboration and resilience through connected digital twins

Catherine Pearce, Innovation manager, Sniffer and programme manager for Climate Ready Clyde

Climate Ready Clyde

Brendan Bromwich, Principal civil engineer, Mott MacDonald

Systems thinking to deliver resilient water supply: Water Resources South East (WRSE)

Natee Thongchan, Future cities advisor, Prosperity Fund Programme at the British Embassy, Bangkok

Global Future Cities Bangkok

15.30-15.45 The next 10 years for resilience

Lisa Constable

Climate change resilience lead – long term strategy for rail, Great British Railways Transition Team

Lisa presented on plans for climate resilience across the rail industry as part of the long-term strategy for rail.

15.45-15.55 Spoken word poetry

Awa Ndiaye

Carbon management consultant, Mott MacDonald

15.55-16.00 Close

Our Carbon Crunch journey so far...

2013

The Infrastructure Carbon Review sets out 10 recommendations for reducing carbon in infrastructure, encompassing leadership, communication and culture, metrics and governance, commercial solutions, innovation and standards.

The Infrastructure Carbon Review identifies the link between reductions in carbon and reductions in cost, and proposes strategies to bring both carbon and cost down simultaneously when constructing, operating and maintaining infrastructure.”

Mark Enzer
Infrastructure Carbon Review lead author
Strategic advisor, Mott MacDonald

2014

We have set big, hairy, audacious goals that can only be attained by pursuing long-term collaborative relationships throughout our supply chain.”

Jason Tucker
Head of capital delivery and supply chain management, Anglian Water

National Grid makes the use of a Carbon Interface Toolkit (CIT) compulsory on all its projects; qualification to tender for National Grid contracts now requires measurement of carbon using the CIT.

2015

Too many asset owners feel they need to steer their carbon-cutting journeys themselves: out of more than 15,000 customers, only a handful make a point of asking how we can provide lower carbon solutions.”

Andrew Swain
Senior Manager, sustainability, Tarmac

Mott MacDonald launches the Carbon Portal, the first carbon calculator to directly measure the capital and operational carbon footprint of BIM-designed assets.

December 2015 The Paris Agreement is struck at COP21. World leaders of 195 countries agree to substantially reduce global greenhouse gas emissions to limit the global temperature increase in this century to 2C while pursuing efforts to limit the increase to 1.5C.

2016

In May 2016 PAS 2080, the international standard for managing infrastructure carbon, is launched.

The BSI’s 2080 standard will provide much needed guidance to help all asset owners make the most of carbon management. For most, complying with PAS 2080 will lead to a complete rethink of ‘business as usual’. But as always, it will be businesses at the vanguard of change which reap the rewards.”

Scott Steedman
Director of Standards, BSI

2017

Productivity and sustainability are inextricably linked. There is a gap between how we boost productivity, and how being more efficient can produce a more sustainable outcome.”

Keith Waller
senior advisor, Infrastructure & Projects Authority

The UK government publishes its Clean Growth Strategy, setting out policies and proposals to deliver increased economic growth and decreased emissions. Plans include greenhouse gas removal technologies, improving the energy efficiency of homes and ending the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040.

2018

The UK’s third carbon budget (2018-22) starts, with the target of reducing emissions to 37% of 1990 levels.

There’s no question that we’re able to minimise the rise in global temperature – and that we can afford it. The main barrier is political will.”

Chris Stark
Chief executive, Committee on Climate Change

2019

The UK Net-Zero Infrastructure Industry Coalition is formed, a network of prominent public and private infrastructure businesses and academic institutions who are committed to achieving net-zero. Mott MacDonald is a founding member.

June 2019 The UK government legally commits to cut national greenhouse gas emissions to net-zero by 2050.

The technologies needed to deliver net-zero are already known and understood, and the cost of key ones is already falling. That means that net-zero can be achieved for the same cost as originally estimated for the previous goal, which was to reduce the UK’s emissions by 80% measured against a 1990 baseline.”

Jenny Hill
Head of buildings, industry and bioenergy, Committee on Climate Change

2020

The coronavirus pandemic sees carbon emissions across the developed world drop to low levels amid lockdowns, reduced international travel and disruptions to industry. The effect is short lived, with emissions rebounding within the year.

While the world’s attention has been rightly engaged by the COVID-19 pandemic, the imperative to reduce carbon emissions and address the mounting challenge of climate change has not gone away. In fact, the pandemic has further emphasised that we can’t take our natural systems for granted, and that ‘business as usual’ is simply not an option for us.”

Mike Haigh
Executive chair. Mott MacDonald

2021

The only way to solve a two-sided market problem is to tackle both supply and demand at the same time. By unleashing the power of partnerships, we can take sustainability as far as possible and compound our impact on climate change.”

Joe Devlin
Senior analyst, power NI

November 2021: COP26 is held in Glasgow. Countries are obliged to submit or update their plans for reducing carbon emissions in line with the targets set in the Paris Agreement.

2022

Carbon Crunch 2022 addresses resilience alongside carbon reduction, recognising the urgent need for an integrated approach to climate change.
Register your interest

10th Carbon Crunch

A systems approach to climate change: reduction and resilience

18 October 2022
Institution of Civil Engineers, One Great George Street, London

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