LISTEN | COP26 podcasts tackle sustainability in the property industry

The UN’s Climate Change Conference may be over, but the sustainability discussion continues.

Learn about how the property industry is tackling net zero, the challenges facing the country’s green ambitions and what needs to be done to make a better future in the Place North West COP26 podcast series.

We spent the past few months speaking with engineers, developers, energy providers and more to get a firm grasp of what the sector is doing and what needs to be done in terms of sustainability.

Here’s a breakdown of the topics covered:


Bruntwood Works’ Aisling McNulty and Bruntwood’s Sophie West talk about how the company is aiming to create the first carbon-neutral, new-build commercial development in the country – and how such a scheme can be replicated at scale. Listen to “How do you create a net zero, new-build office?”

Assura’s Jonathan Murphy and Ashley Seymour share the practical ways they are making medical facilities as sustainably as possible. Listen to “How to deliver net zero buildings for the NHS”.

Renewable energy

Pegasus Group’s Chris Calvert and Dale Turner weigh in on the opportunities and obstacles surrounding wind energy. Listen to How can the UK harness wind energy to fight climate change?”

Pegasus Group’s Simon Tarr and Ben Thompson do a deep dive on the issues surrounding the UK’s electrical grid infrastructure and what that means for reaching net zero. Listen to “How Britain’s ageing infrastructure could defeat its green ambitions”.


Onward Homes’ Sandy Livingstone and GLD Technical Consulting’s Laura Dunlop chat about how the push for retrofitting impacts housing associations, which are facing huge financial outlays to bring their stock in line with changing legislation. Listen to “How can we retrofit the country’s housing stock?”

WSP head of net zero and sustainability for building services Kate Dougherty delves into the ins and outs of retrofitting beyond just housing, tackling how commercial projects need to get on board to help the UK meet its net zero ambitions. Listen to “Retrofitting 101: the dos and don’ts of making old buildings sustainable”.

ForHousing chief executive Colette McKune walks us through the social landlord’s practical approach to tackling retrofitting in its properties and how it is getting tenants involved. Listen to “Retrofitting in action: lessons learned from ForHousing”.

TLT LLP legal director Joseph Meredith provides insight into the tug-of-war being fought between occupiers and landlords over who should pay to bring buildings in line with sustainability targets. Listen to “How is the drive for net zero impacting landlord and tenant relationships?”

Electric vehicles

Pegasus Group executive director Andrew Cook outlines how to ensure electric vehicle charging units are as green as promised – and common mistakes developers make when putting them in. Listen to “The two questions you need to ask about EV charging stations”

Building materials

Wienerberger UK’s head of sustainability, Stephanie Palmer, breaks down the green credentials of bricks and shares what the company is doing to mitigate its carbon footprint. Listen to “Examining the sustainability of brick”.


Civic Engineers’ Paul Morris and James Bruce share how engineers can help projects boost biodiversity and reduce carbon footprints. Listen to “How can engineers maximise sustainability in development?”

Energy efficiency

MEES Solutions’ David Cadwallader and Andrew Knapp share tips on how you can boost your building’s energy proficiency certificate rating. Listen to “Five easy ways to improve your EPC rating”

Unify Energy chief executive Sarah Bateman explains why spending money on solar panels, so-called green energy and EV charging points might not be the wisest thing for businesses looking to reduce their environmental impact to do right now. Listen to “Back to basics: Cutting through the net zero noise”.

Green infrastructure­­

LUC’s Lucy Wallwork and Alex Burton share their expertise on how smart landscape design and ecology-minded planning can help the UK reach its net zero goal. Listen to “How can green infrastructure combat climate change?”


Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s Sarah Holland, SI Sealy’s Dmitri Korolenko and Matt Pickford explore the ways in which public authorities are working towards Greater Manchester’s net zero carbon target of 2038 and the drivers and the challenges involved. Listen to “What is the public sector doing to meet net zero targets?”

HBD director Lee Treanor and Cundall partner Paul Kenyon examine why the private sector is leading sustainability initiatives, rather than the government. Listen to “Why is the market pushing for net zero faster than legislation?”


Rebelleon’s Matt Roche shares how education, partnerships and open access to data can help push forward sustainability goals. Listen to “Why education, collaboration and data are key to tackling climate change”.

Place North West‘s COP26 podcast series was sponsored by:

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