Dr Jennifer Schooling OBE, Director of the Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC), is a co-author of Cambridge Zero Policy Forum's green recovery report, ‘A Blueprint for a Green Future’, which is now published and available to download at the Cambridge Zero website.
CSIC, through the University of Cambridge, is an active member of UKCRIC and is hosted at The National Research Facility for Infrastructure Sensing (NRFIS) which is housed in the new Civil Engineering Building on the West Cambridge Campus. NRFIS is part of the UKCRIC portfolio of research and innovation facilities funded through the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Cambridge Zero, which is led by Dr Emily Shuckburgh, is the ambitious climate initiative by the University of Cambridge to harness the full range of research and policy expertise to develop solutions that work for our lives, society and economy in creating a zero-carbon future.
The multidisciplinary report brings together ideas from senior academics from the University of Cambridge to present a series of recommendations for policymakers and industry.
Dr Schooling, who has co-written the chapter ‘Investing in Resilient and Sustainable Infrastructure’, said: “Despite the Covid-19 pandemic having a dramatic impact on all or lives, its impact of CO2 emissions has been relatively small. Our trajectory for recovery must not return to pre-pandemic levels – we must do more. Collaborative action will be crucial to securing the changes to reach net zero by 2050; the consequences for not acting now will be devastating for many.”
The executive summary of the Report states: “The COVID-19 pandemic has already wreaked an immense toll on lives, livelihoods, and on the global economy. The UK can emerge stronger and more resilient, but to do so we must also face head-on the triple challenge of responding to the threats posed by growing social inequality, the destruction of nature, and climate change. Inequalities can be addressed to create a fairer and more just society; nature can be valued and supported so we leave it in an improved and resilient state for future generations; and the threat of climate change can be limited by rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions – indeed, the UK has committed as a nation to reach net-zero emissions over the next few decades. We can make this a story of hope and of opportunity, and one of shaping a future that is, simply, better – for everyone. However, to realise these aspirations we need a coherent and effective plan based on our best evidence and knowledge. To this end, we offer a blueprint for a green future.”
The Cambridge Zero Policy Forum is run by Cambridge Zero and the Centre for Science and Policy and brings together more than 80 senior academics from across the University of Cambridge to help tackle the policy challenges posed by the transition to a net zero society.
Image credit: Photo by USGS via Unsplash