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What is CIBSE doing for COP? 

From 31 October to 12 November in Glasgow, the UK is hosting COP26, the UN climate change conference.  

Attendees to COP itself are the negotiating parties, i.e. typically government and approved representations from communities, NGOs, scientists etc.. Professional institutions such as CIBSE typically do not attend.  

However, there are many “fringe” events organised in Glasgow, elsewhere and online beyond the international negotiations themselves, and COP is an opportunity for many activities to happen around climate action, to exchange ideas and raise public awareness. CIBSE have been playing a part in this in many ways, through our own efforts and supporting the work of others.  

The following is an overview of some of CIBSE work during COP and on climate change generally.  

Climate action  

CIBSE has long been active on the topic of climate change mitigation and adaptation, and linking it to building performance. Since 2019 we have had a Climate Action Plan, which is revised annually. In addition in 2021 we signed up to the Construction Industry Council joint climate action plan: 

Net Zero guidance and webinars  

We are always reviewing our guidance on how to reduce energy use and carbon emissions towards Net Zero, and we have published a number of resources in the last few months. Our Net Zero guidance page signposts to the most relevant guidance, and how it fits into our recommended approach, from target setting, energy use reduction and demand management, low carbon supplies, and monitoring, evaluation and disclosure.  

Many of our free-to-access Grow Your Knowledge webinars are relevant to the Net Zero agenda.

Events during COP 

Look out for more announcements and events we will be holding during the whole of COP.

2 November 12:00-13:00 (GMT) | Webinar launch of new guidance: CIBSE TM67 Electrification of Buildings for Net Zero

Electrification of heat is to play a significant role in meeting our Net Zero targets. In itself and alongside electrification of transport and other parts of the economy, this creates new challenges for engineers. The webinar will provide an introduction to new CIBSE guidance on the topic, and an opportunity to interact with the authors and influence the next streams of work for CIBSE.

You can view the recording and slides here:

4 November 11:00-12:00 (GMT) | Webinar launch of new guidance: CIBSE AM16 Heat pump installations for multi-unit residential buildings
Heat pumps are the most efficient way to generate heat from electricity. Consequently, they have a crucial role to play in the transition to net zero, particularly in the residential sector where traditionally their market penetration has been low. In this webinar you will hear from a number of speakers involved in the heat pump industry- including the authors of AM16- CIBSE’s latest guidance on the application of heat pumps to multi-residential buildings such a high density housing and student accommodation. Our speakers will take you through the key points of CIBSE’s latest Applications Manual: an invaluable guide to the design, installation, commissioning and operation of heat pumps in a residential setting.

You can view the recording and slides here:

8 November 17:00-18:00 (GMT) | Joint CIBSE – EPG – YEPG – LETI event: What Does Zero Mean?

We are all aiming for Net Zero carbon, but what does it mean? Do we all agree on what it should be? Are we all aiming for the same thing? LETI and the Whole Life Carbon Network produced a set of definitions this summer.

CIBSE and LETI are now producing a set of FAQs to accompany the definitions and make sure they are applied consistently in as many real-life situations are possible. In addition, CIBSE are also considering whether to adopt the definitions and are very keen to hear from members on this.

Look out for a summary and video of the event, and for our survey on the Net Zero definitions and FAQs, to be launched in November.

11 November 9:30-11:00 (GMT) | COP26 Green Zone event: Construction: The Built Environment

CIBSE’s work on climate action will be represented in the COP Green Zone as part of the Construction Leadership Council’s event on CO26 Built Environment day, where the Construction Industry Council will present Carbon Zero, the cross-industry climate action plan which CIBSE signed up to and in which we have had an influential role from the start.

All signatories have committed to publish an implementation plan by COP, and CIBSE will publish its plan this week to coincide with the event at COP26.

11 November 11:30-13:00 (GMT) | COP26 Blue Zone event: Launch of UKGBC Whole Life Carbon Roadmap

CIBSE contributed to the UKGBC Roadmap and are very pleased to see it launched at COP, in the Blue Zone.

The roadmap pulls together a multitude of data sources, initiatives and recommendations for the built environment. It also provides extremely useful sector-specific carbon budgets, which should allow us to build on existing work and develop energy use and embodied carbon across the built environment. 

Livestream to the launch:

As part of our involvement with the Royal Academy of Engineering National Energy Policy Centre, we have contributed to RAEng videos on the role of engineering in achieving Net Zero. You can view the first video, explaining the systems approach to Net Zero, here:

Get in touch

If you would like to find out more or be involved with some of our activities, contact Julie Godefroy at