Written evidence submitted by Mr George Adams (Engineer at SPIE)

o              The possible compound effects of such events;

The effect of climate change will affect such things a railway lines because their thermal tolerance is not sufficient. There will be impacts on how buildings will be affected Buildings have a big impact on the environment. ... Poorly designed and constructed buildings use more energy, increasing the demand on energy production and contributing to global warming. Reducing energy use in buildings is one of the most important ways to reduce humans' overall environmental impact. The behaviour of concrete at high temperatures is influenced by several factors, including the rate of temperature rise and the aggregate type and stability.

Heat changes the expansion dimensions of materials, some are more affected than others, and this leads to misaligned joins during the life cycle as more extreme temperatures are impacted on older buildings failures of structure could occur, affecting cladding, fabrics and even foundations . Heat also causes occupants to experience overheating leading to health issues and increased fatalities. However, the increase in heat in city environments could also be an issue to the people who build buildings and maintain them, where a hot period could cause increased absence from work or lower levels of concentration at the work place leading to mistakes. 

Buildings are vulnerable to increased climate change and in the future there will be higher risks of component failures and even partial collapse.

Declining health and significant loss of value as a result of more storms, floods or structural damage, unhealthy indoor climate conditions and even buildings that cannot be occupied at certain extreme climate conditions unless significant works are undertaken to reduce the impact of increasing bad climatic conditions. The CERES Building Resilient Cities: From Risk Assessment to Redevelopment is a useful reference. The paper presents a four-stage strategic planning framework tested and refined in workshops along with the diverse ideas and innovations identified by workshop participants. The approach is proposed for use as a second stage of climate adaptation planning, following the completion of local vulnerability and risk assessments. However, a huge challenge is to increase the UK populations understanding and belief that the climate emergency is real refer to 22% of people in the UK consider climate change ‘biggest issue’ of today Environment and Energy, Resource Management, Treatment and Recovery 11th November 2020.

o              The interdependencies between different aspects of UK CNI;

The interdependency of buildings, transport and the economy is not yet adequately considered. The combined potential effects and how they may escalate into both societal and economic failures needs further consideration, even if the UK meets its climate objectives it will still be subject to what the rest of the World achieves, hance resilience of our cities will be crucial to future health of our nation. The UK is very dependant on products from other countries that are part of our engineering ability to build and refurbish our infrastructure including buildings, failure of these sources would have a major affect on our ability to maintain our infrastructure and city environments.

6 January 2022