Bringing housing professionals together to combat climate change.

‘Decarbonisation’ is a term that is widely used, but what does it actually mean?  In simpler terms, it means to reduce carbon dioxide (C02) emissions.

Carbon dioxide is responsible for about three-quarters of the greenhouse gases that affect the environment by trapping heat and over warming the Earth.

Welsh Government’s Future Generation Act has an ambition to deliver a more prosperous, equal and greener Wales, including reducing carbon emissions by at least 80%.

With the average household in the UK emitting 2.7 tonnes of CO2 every year from heating their home,  decarbonising social housing is critical to achieving the government’s ambition.

Driving this forward requires taking positive action in partnership.

Connecting professionals with the Circular Economy Innovation Communities (CEIC) programme.

We were approached by the team at Swansea University who lead the  Circular Economy Innovation Communities (CEIC) programme. 

The CEIC programme is a 10 month programme that is funded by WEFO (Welsh European Funding Office).

It aims to help public sector professionals to develop new and creative ideas that will enhance productivity and action, while delivering circular economy* benefits.

*A circular economy is an economic system aimed at eliminating waste and the continual use of resources.

Tackling climate change and creating a more sustainable Wales is an important priority for the public sector in Wales.

With housing playing such a crucial role in this agenda, we reached out  to housing and community regeneration colleagues working in public service to see if they’d be interested in coming together on the CEIC programme.

 

Co-producing an idea

The next step in the journey was bringing people together to discuss what area they wanted to focus on.

With Swansea and Cardiff Metropolitan universities, we held three workshops with over 40 attendees from 20 organisations.

Together the group decided to focus on ‘decarbonisation of social housing’. 

As a next  step, interested participants will apply to take part in the CEIC programme.

The successful group will be tasked to look at how they can implement decarbonisation solutions, that are resource-efficient, resilient and low-carbon by design. 

Edwina O'Hart, Innovation Lead at Community Housing Cymru said:

"As the innovation lead at CHC, I see this as a great opportunity for the sector and I’m keen not to reinvent the wheel. The housing association reps who successfully take part in this programme will form part of our sector’s innovation community, sharing the learning even further with our help and support.”