The Kassandra Project: Harnessing Climate Change in the Historic Environment

The Kassandra Project: Harnessing Climate Change in the Historic Environment

Presented by Europa Nostra UK

07/10/2020 - 07/10/2020
Introductory, Intermediate, CPD
St. Botolph Without Bishopsgate
United Kingdom

Event details

16.00-17.00 Wednesday 7th October 2020

Online lecture via Zoom, presented by Europa Nostra UK

Kassandra developed as part of the fight against climate change, is a multi-dimensional research and design approach that aims at promoting sustainable development by making historic cities more resilient to climate change and, via improved city planning and resource management, enhance the quality of the natural and built environment and the quality of life of its inhabitants.

After Europe ground to a coronavirus-enforced halt, images captured by one of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Copernicus satellites showed huge reductions in nitrogen dioxide concentrations over Paris, Madrid and Rome from 14 – 25 March, compared to the same week in 2019. Similar falls were recorded in China cities in late January and February 2020.

It sounds like good news. We can already see a change in the interaction of man-made and natural environments: clear waters and fish in the Venice canals, wild boars in the streets of Rome, dolphins swimming in many commercial ports, but that does not automatically translate in a sustained improvement. Indeed, it is likely that there will be a surge in pollution when the stalled economies start again.

Covid 19 is just one warning light. Climate change is biggest threat facing humanity over the long term and a much more invisible and deadly one. The "COVID-19" crisis has taught us about the importance of accurate and timely information.

It is essential to acquire the largest possible quantity of data early on and this must be immediately analysed, correctly interpreted and transmitted to decision makers. This will enable decisions to have solid, scientific and objective bases, and avoid the risk of them becoming arbitrary, confusing or worse counterproductive.

The questions for the historic environment are multiple: how do we rapidly analyse complex multi-layered data that may influence climate change? How do we prepare for what may be an inevitable future? How do we harness the power of this change to adapt and create a new sustainable partnership with nature? How do we couple this with the enhancement of natural and built Heritage?

Mark Cannata established his architectural practice, Zero Zero, in 2013 with Francis Scott in New Zealand and opened the Italian office in 2015. Prior to moving to New Zealand, Mark was Head of Culture and Heritage for Europe, Middle East and Africa at HOK in London. He previously led the Historic Buildings Unit at John McAslan + Partners and worked for a number of Conservation practices in the UK and design practices in Italy.

About the speaker:

Mark has been responsible for the delivery of a large number of projects that often involve careful interventions in historic contexts, such as London’s King’s Cross Station and the De La Warr Pavilion – one of Britain’s most important Modernist buildings. He has also overseen innovative design proposals for high profile projects internationally, including the reinvention of the BBC Maida Vale recording studios and the creative re-use of seventeenth-century Franciscan convent ruins to house the new Museo Archeologico Ibleo in Ragusa, Italy. In New Zealand Mark was responsible also for the Built Heritage Technical Expert Report for the Auckland City Rail Link, which assessed the impact of the project on central Auckland’s Heritage.

Mark is a Europa Nostra Member and a long standing member of the Europa Nostra UK Committee.

Booking Terms & Conditions

Accessibility: please contact Europa Nostra UK before booking to discuss any special access requirements.

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