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Design for Future Climate – Developing an Adaptation Strategy

Executive Summary

Published on the 31st of March 2010, Departmental Adaptation Plans (DAPs) set out the adaptation strategy for each government department in accordance with the key risks posed by projected climate change. In response to these  publications, the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) launched a competition to fund the development of strategies that could be used to adapt UK buildings to the changing climate. A broad interpretation of the term ‘adaptation’ was advised by TSB, but the technologies, systems and processes relating to building comfort, construction, water management and occupancy factors were outlined as key fields of investigation. Parameters were also set regarding the type of building project for which the adaptation strategies should be devised. These specified that the building project should be worth more than £5 million and must be aiming to achieve a BREEAM 2008 Excellent rating.

BRE Wales & South West are retained by Admiral Insurance as the sustainable design advisor on the design and construction of their new office headquarters in Cardiff and a proposal was submitted to TSB to develop an adaptation strategy for the building. The building fitted the criteria outlined by TSB and Admiral were themselves committed to the goals of the project, having just signed a 25 year fullmaintenance lease on the building. Admiral were also aware of the potential impact of the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) scheme on their business, and the project presented a good opportunity to plan for economically viable Carbon reduction strategy that meets their business needs. BRE was successful in its application and a 90 year adaptation plan was devised in co-operation with the technical design team, the developer and the end user. An integral role was also played by the BRE Trust supported team whom are based at Cardiff University and have technical expertise in building energy modelling and analysis.

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