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Can you Swim? Planning and Climate Change

Thursday, 08 February 2018 at 10:00AM - 4:30PM
We the Curious, Bristol BS1 5DB, UK
RTPI South West

In 2007 government published the first dedicated planning policy on climate change. Ten years on the enormity of the challenges are no less and the consequences of inaction have become more apparent, but has planning’s attention turned elsewhere?

The NPPF says:

“Planning plays a key role in helping shape places to secure radical reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, minimising vulnerability and providing resilience to the impacts of climate change, and supporting the delivery of renewable and low carbon energy and associated infrastructure. This is central to the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development.”

This conference will take a fresh look at what climate change now means for the built environment and what planning can realistically do to deliver low carbon living in a changing climate.

Speakers and topics include:

  • National to local, the low carbon challenge
    Simon Roberts Chief Executive, Centre for Sustainable Energy

    A national to local view on cutting carbon: what needs to be done and by when, and where local fits in; what can be done locally to make a difference; and some reflections on why meaningful public engagement and consent for change matter so much.

  • National to local, adapting to the impacts of climate change
    Liz Parkes, Deputy Director Climate Change and Business Services, Environment Agency

    A national to local view on adapting to the impacts of a changing climate: including the Climate Change Risk Assessment 2017, National Adaptation Programme and implications for localities in the South West.

  • Developing sustainable buildings
    Philip Gray, Associate, Head of Sustainability, Building Design

    What makes a building a sustainable building, what the construction industry is doing and what can we aspire to; how planners can help to deliver sustainable buildings and do they sometimes get in the way?

  • The planning challenge
    Hugh Ellis, Director of Policy at the TCPA

    Can planning make a difference and are planners stepping up to the plate?

Workshop 1: Surgery on local energy planning
Rachel Coxcoon, Head of Local & Community Empowerment, Centre for Sustainable Energy.

How planners can help deliver a more sustainable energy future for their area: including large to small renewable energy projects, energy plans, local and neighbourhood planning and common issues in development management.

Workshop 2: Planning out flooding
Sam Kipling, National Sustainable Places Senior Planning Ddvisor at the Environment Agency

Tackling flood risk through local plans and development management: covering the major risks (sea, river and surface water) and the impact of climate change; the role of Strategic Flood Risk Assessments; why planning plays a crucial role; and how the Environment Agency can help the planning process.

Workshop 3: EIA and Climate Change
Josh Fothergill, Director Fothergill Training & Consulting Ltd

Climate change and the 2014 Environmental Assessment Directive: what considering the impact of projects on climate and their vulnerability to climate change means in practice, and the implications for planners (screening, scoping, assessment, ES, review & reasoned conclusions). The session will be of value to those working on EIA both in private practice and for local authorities, drawing on UK and EU guidance and examples from UK practice.

Download the programme

This event is supported by

CIOB Logo  RICS Image
ICE Logo  RIBA logo
 The Landscape Institute  


We are delighted that these professional bodies support the programme and are marketing the event to their members. We hope this event has a cross sector/professional audience to widen the discussions on the day.

How to book
Follow the online booking links below - you can pay online or request an invoice. We ask that you try to complete the purchase order number field at point of booking or forward soon after.

For multiple bookings accross the 2018 programme, you may download the booking form and email to

Download the full 2018 programme.

Exhibitor Opportunities

We now welcome exhibitors to showcase their firm, recent developments and to further engage with RTPI Members and professionals in planning. Please contact for further information.

0207 929 8190