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HQN annual conference 2019: Tackling climate change


HQN annual conference 2019

Finding local housing solutions to a global problem.

The planet is under threat. People are taking to the streets to protest. (Some) politicians have called it a national emergency. It is time to act.

Brexit may dominate the news headlines but it's the effects of climate change that have much wider and far more serious implications – and we need to act now.

Last year a major report by the IPPCC suggested that limiting global warming to 1.5°C compared to 2°C could go hand in hand with ensuring a more sustainable and equitable society.

But to achieve this goal, 'rapid and far-reaching' transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities would be required. Global net human-caused emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) would need to fall by about 45% from 2010 levels by 2030, reaching ‘net zero’ around 2050. This means that any remaining emissions would need to be balanced by removing CO2 from the air.

As a direct response to this report, the UK's Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has called for a target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions in the UK by 2050.

We get the message loud and clear but what must we do in housing?

Well, we will need to rip out gas heating in all our homes and put in things like heat pumps or hydrogen boilers. The CCC wants us to make a good start before 2030. What will it cost? The annual costs could come to £15 billion for all homes across the UK. That’s a steep bill.

The CCC suggests that government will have to help out. But I’m sure that each landlord will have to sign a big cheque to pay their share of it. You could find that the regulator is keeping a beady eye on how fast you are going.

What about the heating bills for our tenants? The report tells all of us to turn down the thermostat. And in fairness they do call for better insulation to cut costs. The CCC predicts that the costs of new types of heating will fall over time. But who will pay the upfront costs of putting it in? Could this push resources away from building new homes? 

And how will you be getting about to do your job? It certainly won’t be in petrol or diesel cars. So what will it cost to switch to electric cars? Will you get any help with this? Mind you the way we are going with building new power stations you do wonder where all this electricity is coming from. Maybe it’s time to get the bike out the shed!

We'll attempt to answer all these questions and more at this year's HQN annual conference. And we've got a top line-up of speakers to help.

Of course, there is a tendency to focus on the downside risks. But the CCC points out that emissions fell 40% from 1990 to 2018 while GDP grew by 70% over the same period. We have an opportunity to lead the world here.

Key themes:

  • What the net-zero target means for housing
  • What you will actually have to do to modify the homes you own
  • How you should be making sure new homes meet the required standards
  • How you will need to change how you operate, eg, fleet management
  • The likely costs to your organisation and the impact on the business plan
  • The impact on tenants including income collection
  • The timetable for moving to net-zero emissions.


  • The Rt Hon. the Lord Deben, Chair of the Committee on Climate Change
  • George Bond, UK Student Climate Network
  • Tom Chance, Housing Policy Expert, Green Party
  • Dr Aimee Ambrose, Reader in Energy Policy, Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR), Sheffield Hallam University
  • Linda Thiel, Director, London Studio of Scandinavian practice, White Arkitekter
  • Pat Hayes, Managing Director, Be First (London Borough of Barking and Dagenham).

More to be announced...

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Delegate fees:
Price per delegate: £289.00*
Members of the Housing Quality Network: FREE*
Members of any other HQN network: £209.00*

Early bird non members only£259.00 *

Early bird pricing ends on 14 June 2019.

*Free places are available to members of the Housing Quality Network. To find out your entitlement please get in touch.

Please note that all prices are subject to standard VAT. Please call 01904 557150 for more information.

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A full refund will be given if a cancellation is made 28 calendar days or more prior to the event, and a 50% refund if a cancellation is made 15-27 calendar days prior to the event. We regret that no refund can be given if a cancellation is made 14 calendar days or less before the event.

Cancellations must be made in writing, and will be acknowledged by HQN Limited.


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