Urban Climate Resilience: Tackling Microclimates and Dwelling Overheating

Urban Climate Resilience: Tackling Microclimates and Dwelling Overheating

Join us for the launch of Briefing Notes - a new kind of article for practitioners - to discuss adaptation at two related urban scales. 30 June 2021, 12:00 – 13:30 BST

The design of our cities, streets, open spaces and homes impacts on the local climate (microclimate) as well as on the health of citizens.  Compact urban form is often argued to be a more sustainable approach, but can cause adverse consequences on local microclimates, with localised cascading impacts on building energy demand for cooling/heating and air quality. At the scale of the individual building, summertime internal overheating in new and existing dwellings is widespread and increasing, even in the UK’s temperate climate.  There is an urgent need to solve the problem. Urban flats and small dwellings are particularly affected, presenting new health risks to elderly and vulnerable residents.

This event will feature the launch of two briefing papers on microclimates and overheating in temperate climates, bringing in panels of professionals from a variety of disciplines to consider the findings and implications for professional practice in the UK context. We will examine interacting consequences that arise from modern demands (e.g. increased density, increased floor area ratios, economic drivers), explore how resilience can be created and what this means for modifying existing cities, and showcase new knowledge and solutions. Respondents from government and practice are asked:  How can we create and operationalise a resilient response? Which decisions take account of this?  How can this be mainstreamed into professional practice?

The briefing papers:

Urban microclimate in temperate climates: a summary for practitioners by Rohinton Emmanuel

Summertime overheating in dwellings in temperate climates by Kevin Lomas

Speakers and Panellists

Richard Lorch, Editor in Chief, Buildings & Cities (Chair)

Gemma Holmes, Senior Analyst, Adaptation, UK Climate Change Committee

Rohinton Emmanuel, Director of the Centre for Energy and the Built Environment, Glasgow Caledonian University.

Kevin J. Lomas, School of Architecture, Building, and Civil Engineering, Loughborough University

Bhakti Depala, Development Liaison Manager, Dept of the Built Environment, City of London Corporation

Joanna Averley, Chief Planner, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG)

Joe Baker, Head of Carbon Management, Haringey Council

Paul Ciniglio, Refurbishment Lead, National Energy Foundation

Briefing Notes

Briefing Notes are free, short articles (about 5 pages) that quickly and efficiently inform practitioners, clients and the public about the current state of knowledge on a particular topic and the implications this poses to them – opportunities and risks. These peer-reviewed articles address multiple levels of performance, the differences in its spatial scales, as well as lifecycle / long-term concerns. They will be tailored to the varied interests of the different actors.


Attendance is free, but advance registration is required. Registration and tickets: https://bit.ly/3iImDZJ

Time: Wednesday 30 June 2021 12:00 – 13:30 BST



This event is jointly hosted by Buildings & Cities and London Climate Change Partnership.

It is held as part of London Climate Action Week.

Latest Peer-Reviewed Journal Content

Journal Content

Climate action in urban mobility: personal and political transformations
G Hochachka, K G Logan, J Raymond & W Mérida

Transformational climate action at the city scale: comparative South–North perspectives
D Simon, R Bellinson & W Smit

Stretching or conforming? Financing urban climate change adaptation in Copenhagen
S Whittaker & K Jespersen

Embodied carbon emissions in buildings: explanations, interpretations, recommendations
T Lützkendorf & M Balouktsi

Pathways to improving the school stock of England towards net zero
D Godoy-Shimizu, S M Hong, I Korolija, Y Schwartz, A Mavrogianni & D Mumovic

Urban encroachment in ecologically sensitive areas: drivers, impediments and consequences
M H Andreasen, J Agergaard, R Y Kofie, L Møller-Jensen & M Oteng-Ababio

Towards sufficiency and solidarity: COP27 implications for construction and property
D Ness

Local decarbonisation opportunities and barriers: UK public procurement legislation
K Sugar, T M Mose, C Nolden, M Davis, N Eyre, A Sanchez-Graells & D Van Der Horst

Integrating climate change and urban regeneration: success stories from Seoul
J Song & B Müller

Canadian cities: climate change action and plans
Y Herbert, A Dale & C Stashok

Energy, emerging technologies and gender in homes [editorial]
Y Strengers, K Gram-Hanssen, K Dahlgren & L Aagaard

Gender roles and domestic power in energy-saving home improvements
F Bartiaux

Socioeconomic and livelihood impacts within Bangkok’s expanding metropolitan region
G Gullette, P Thebpanya & S Singto

Complexifying urban expansion: an exploratory, gradient-based approach
S M Richter & R P Bixler

The Ethiopia Urban Expansion Initiative and knowledge exchange
P Lamson-Hall & R Martin

Wellbeing as an emergent property of social practice
G T Morgan, S Coleman, J B Robinson, M F Touchie, B Poland, A Jakubiec, S Macdonald, N Lach & Y Cao

Barriers and opportunities of fast-growing biobased material use in buildings
V Göswein, J Arehart, C Phan-huy, F Pomponi & G Habert

Planning gaps: unexpected urban expansion in five Colombian metropolitan areas
M M Salazar Tamayo & J D Julio Estrada

Modern methods of construction: reflections on the current research agenda [editorial]
S D Green

Masculine roles and practices in homes with photovoltaic systems
M Mechlenborg & K Gram-Hanssen

Brokering Gender Empowerment in Energy Access in the Global South
A Schiffer, M Greene, R Khalid, C Foulds, C A Vidal, M Chatterjee, S Dhar-Bhattacharjee, N Edomah, O Sule, D Palit & A N Yesutanbul

Housing adaptability: new research, emerging practices and challenges [editorial]
S Pelsmakers & E Warwick

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