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Adapting to change using blue-green infrastructure

This conference will consider how industry can help unlock the multiple benefits of blue-green infrastructure to build resilience and help society adapt to the impacts of an already changing climate and future risks.

Online registration has now closed for this event.  If you would like to register to attend, please complete and return the booking form to James Nguyen.


The UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) latest report ‘Climate Change 2021 The Physical Science Basis’ signalled 'code red for humanity' and states that ‘Climate change is already affecting every inhabited region across the globe …’.

We know that mitigation of climate change through reducing carbon emissions is urgent. More urgency also needs to be placed on adaptation in order to protect our communities and habitats from the impacts already occurring, while we strive toward net zero. This was the key message of The Climate Change Committee’s (CCC) report ‘Progress in adapting to climate change: 2021 Report to Parliament’ which noted that ‘…additional changes in the UK’s climate to 2050 are largely insensitive to the pathway of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions over coming decades’ and that ‘The gap between future levels of risk and planned adaptation has widened in the last 5 years’. Blue-green infrastructure was credited as being a key adaptation measure to generate a range of benefits both for human health and wildlife.

Our 2020 conference ‘Delivering and monitoring blue-green infrastructure’ emphasised the need to mainstream the implementation of blue-green infrastructure. This year the urgency of this message is never more apparent. The impacts of COVID-19 have demonstrated how major threats can disrupt lives, and the messages from the IPCC and CCC emphasise the need to act now to be prepared for further change: goal 2 of COP26 is to ‘urgently adapt to protect communities and natural habitats'.

This CIRIA conference will explore how engagement, evaluation, management implementation and connecting blue-green infrastructure can unlock its multiple benefits as we strive to urgently adapt to the impacts of climate change on our communities and habitats.

Sponsored by:

Why attend

Explore how industry can help unlock the multiple benefits of blue-green infrastructure.
Discover why climate change experts are calling for urgent action.
Understand how engaging governments, businesses, and communities is key to climate change adaptation.
Gain insight into how cities are improving climate resilience.
Measure tangible benefits of blue-green infrastructure.
Earn valuable CPD.

Who should attend
Urban planners
Urban regeneration specialists
Lead Local Flood Authorities
Drainage engineers
Highway engineers
Transport planners
Landscape architects
Landscape contractors
Environmental specialists
Infrastructure engineers
Consulting engineers

Sponsorship opportunities
For information about sponsorship opportunities, please contact Susan Richards.

Wednesday 6 October 2021
09:15 – 13:15

09:15 Welcome and introduction
Alister Scott, Professor of Environmental Geography, Northumbria University
and Chair, Building with Nature Standards Board

09:30 Keynote – Evaluate: Taking action on adaptation
State of the nation: UK ‘woefully unprepared’ for the impacts of climate
The business case: stop greenwashing; align policy and investment; the
Environment Bill
Engage governments, businesses, and communities to adapt to climate
Blue-green infrastructure as a key adaptation measure to protect,
restore and benefit human health and ecosystems.
Kathryn Brown, Head of Adaptation, Climate Change Committee
and Interim Director for Climate Action, The Wildlife Trusts (secondment)

09:55 Evaluate: Making B£ST better
Taking the blue-green infrastructure Benefits Estimation Tool online
Estimate the benefits of blue-green infrastructure
Realise tangible monetary benefits of blue-green infrastructure
Adapt to, while mitigating impacts of, climate change
Prof. Chris Digman, Technical Director, Stantec
Dr Bruce Horton, Principal Sustainability Consultant, Stantec

10:20 Community engagement at Lea Brook Valley
Discover how the collaboration with Yorkshire Water has resulted in
flood meadows, which help to reduce surface water flooding in this
vulnerable area
Gain insight into how the project is coordinated in Dronfield with a
team of local volunteers working for conservation and community
Jacqueline Diaz-Nieto, Wastewater Networks Strategy Lead,
Yorkshire Water
David Walker, Director, Detectronic

10:45 Discussion: Adaptation to climate change using blue-green infrastructure
How can we be better prepared for disease, extreme weather events
and the impacts of climate change?
Understand how blue-green infrastructure can help us live more
harmoniously and how communities can help
Call to action for well-planned interventions
Where is urgent action most required?
Discussion Leader:
Professor Richard Ashley, Emeritus Professor, Department of Civil and
Structural Engineering, University of Sheffield
Prof. Chris Digman, Technical Director, Stantec
Eve Pierrepont, Resilience Portfolio Manager – Living with Water,
Yorkshire Water

11:20 Break

11:40 Delivering blue-green infrastructure through social innovation
Demonstrate how cities can improve climate resilience with blue-green
Gain insight from ten pilot sites across Europe
Share the outcomes, impact and learning from this four-year project
Dr. ir. Sebastiaan van Herk, Partner & Director, Bax & Company

12:05 Delivering blue-green infrastructure through connections
Discover how National Highways is driving climate resilience, and
connecting nature and biodiversity across communities by incorporating
green infrastructure and flood defences across its estate
Learn how these measures have positive impacts on asset performance,
resilience and efficiency as well as improve wellbeing and social cohesion
Dean Kerwick-Chrisp, Team Leader and Principal Environmental Advisor,
Safety Engineering and Standards, National Highways
Simon Spooner, Principal Consultant, Infrastructure, Atkins

12:30 Discussion: Delivering blue and green infrastructure in urban design
Act fast: mobilising communities for adapting to climate change
Delivering multiple benefits to create resilient, sustainable and liveable
Increase community engagement with blue and green spaces
Connect people, places and ideas to share experience, learnings and
practical solutions
Discussion Leader:
Professor Richard Ashley, Emeritus Professor, Department of Civil and
Structural Engineering, University of Sheffield
Dr Liz Sharp, Senior Lecturer, Department of Urban Studies and Planning,
University of Sheffield and Principal Investigator, MAGIC
Tony Williams, Landscape Architect / Natural Scientist (Botany),
Transport Infrastructure Ireland
Pepe Puchol-Salort, Research Postgraduate, Civil and Environmental Engineering
Department, UCL and Member, CAMELLIA research programme

13:05 Closing remarks

CIRIA members £45 + VAT
Non-members £95 + VAT

Please sign in or create an account to register online for this event.
If you are experiencing issues registering online, please complete and return the booking form to James Nguyen.
Alternatively please contact us on 020 7549 3300 or email [email protected]

Joining instructions will be sent 10 days before the event. The link to attend the webinar is strictly personal and should not be shared.

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Further information
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Email: [email protected]


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