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2020 Vision for a 2030 Reality

On 9 September, over 150 delegates joined the 2020 ANZ Virtual Seminardelivered online and live for the first time across Australia and New Zealand. In keeping with the net-zero carbon theme, the online format allowed CIBSE ANZ to keep its carbon footprint as close to zero as possible.
Titled a 2020 Vision for a 2030 Reality, the event was developed to inspire, and provide built environment professionals with the information and tools needed to deliver net-zero and regenerative buildings.
The speakers helping us to navigate this maze came from a diverse range of backgrounds. From engineers and architects to academics and regulators, it was clear from the outset that the challenges are myriad, and the opportunities immense.
How are we to adapt our thinking in the next decade to deliver the best buildings that exceeds today’s expectations and tomorrow’s requirements? The variety of content provided in the seminar provided stimulating ideas to guide this thought process.
The event opened with a powerful Powhiri (Maori welcome) by Were Maiava that thanked our ancestors for their wisdom and the presenters for their time to pass on their messages.  This was followed by a wonderful presentation by Michael Hromek who described the delicate balance between the traditional and modern approaches to buildings and how we can integrate these requirements.  Four keywords from Michael resonated throughout all of the presentations: Understanding, Honour, Integrity and Resilience.
Mary Casey then continued with the theme of integration by explaining the need to think differently if we are to be kind to nature with our future buildings.  Move from the realm of scarcity (consuming resources) to abundance (working with nature to grow together). 

Extracted from What is the role of the engineer in a thriving future?, Mary Casey, HKA

From a legislative perspective the changes keep coming. Whilst the Australian Federal Government appears in some areas to be out of step with many of the States, the New Zealand Government appears to be ahead of everyone. Francesca Muskovic of the Property Council of Australia waxed eloquently about the upcoming changes to Australian building codes, and the positive steps being taken by all levels of government. Andrew Eagles of the New Zealand Green Building Council (NZGBC) upped the ante with a precis of the things we can expect from legislators on the other side of the pond – many of which align with the NZGBC’s mantra - ‘building a better, healthier, greener Aotearoa’.

Extracted from Every Building Counts - Legislating for Energy Efficiency in Australia, Francesca Muskovic, PCA

NABERS has played a pivotal role in driving better building energy performance, and whilst it would be easy for the tool to rest on its laurels, the NABERS Team has been busy in the background ensuring that it properly responds to a range of upcoming challenges and opportunities, including the decarbonisation of electricity grids, and continued use of fossil fuels in buildings. The presentation from Corine Mulet of NABERS was complimented by a thought-provoking paper delivered by Phill Cowling of Cromwell Property, who outlined some of the huge ‘resilience’ challenges faced by property owners and managers. Of particular note was the risk of ‘stranded assets’ – poor performing buildings and buildings that don’t properly respond to a number of climate-related issues (again the use of fossil fuels in buildings was highlighted, with the suggestion that designers could soon be deemed negligent if they continued with the promotion of such systems). Attendees were left in no doubt that building services engineers need to better understand the implications of a changing climate, and the role that they must play.

Extracted from The Resilience imperative – dealing with the risk of ‘stranded assets’ , Phil Cowling, Cromwell Property Group

Peter Hutson's presentation tackled the phase down of refrigerants providing guidance to navigate the impacts of different refrigerants on HVAC design.
In the afternoon Tricia Love, Jason Blake and Richard Palmer painted a roadmap with net-zero case studies, though despite being inspiring, were not without their challenges.  Walking the walk, they showed clearly what was possible. Tricia, Jason and Richard provided sufficient encouragement to ensure delegates were left with no excuses for inaction.

Extracted from Burwood Brickworks - The most sustainable shopping centre in the world, Jason Blake, Frasers Property Australia


The response from delegates was overwhelmingly positive with delegates sighting the range and quality of speakers and different perspectives as stand out benefits of attending. 
“A really solid mix of nuts and bolts issues, blue-sky thinking and take-home challenges” –  anonymous feedback.
The online format also proved to be a winner, with a number of delegates praising the delivery format and welcoming the time, money, and carbon emissions saved, from not having to travel. 
The realities of climate change, and the challenges this creates for the property industry can’t be overemphasised. Neither can the opportunities. Our speakers showed us that we have the tools, that we have the knowledge. The stars are aligning, and it’s time for building services professionals to all step up.

Extracted from Delivering Net Zero on the Grid, Richard Palmer, Integral Group

CIBSE Australia and New Zealand would like to thank our sponsors Stiebel Eltron, ARBS, Temperzone, Belimo and Integral Group once again for supporting this event.