This week it was all about “Solutions” there was a “show and tell” aspect as well…..

> > Now that you have an awareness of how buildings can be designed to adapt to climate change, observe how many of these features are in existence near to where you live. > > > > Step 1. Photograph a building or part of an urban landscape that indicates a design that is adapted to a changing climate (particularly wetter winters, higher summer temperatures and more extreme weather). If you can’t find anything, show a building or part of an urban landscape that is clearly NOT adapted. > >

buildingsThe picture above shows two interesting buildings in the Northern Quarter of Manchester. On the far right is the CIS tower the entire left hand side of the building is covered in photovoltaic cells. This pattern is repeated on the side and reverse aspects as well. This building using electricity generated from the PV to let them keep their lights on all night when no one is working there. No seriously the PV supplied electricity helps reduce the buildings carbon footprint and offset things like air conditioning during the hotter summer months. But this building itself is quite old and the PV panels are a retro fit solution. The picture left and middle are of the Co-op head office directly opposite the CIS tower.

The Co-op head office is one of the most low-energy, sustainable buildings in Europe. It hosts the impressive status of having a BREEAM rating of “Outstanding” .

From  its construction materials to its fabrication methods all were design to reduce congestion, construction overheads and waste. Using a modular design the building was built off site and assembled on site with a significantly smaller footprint than the classic build all on site approach.

Using recirculating airflow technology as well as green power sources the building is designed to be big but with a small footprint.

If you also look in the green box in the picture far left you’ll notice a wind turbine located on the roof of a hotel. Again another modern building less than 10 years old and hosting technology to help it reduce its electricity needs.

> > Step 2. Share your photograph. There are many different ways to do this. You could post a link to it on the discussion, from your blog, a Flikr account or any other online file sharing or photo sharing site. > >

Picture shared above was sent as link to discussion area along with a version of the text above.

> > Step 3. Geo tag your photograph to show its location. > >

53 29.293 N 2 14.189 W,-2.23649 U35° R01° 211m 22/02/2014 14:50

> > Step 4. Post a link to your photograph to the discussion and then explain the features of its design in relation to adaptation. > >

Done that.

1. What are the most important themes you have learned this week?

The NIMBY argument was I think being defended by the Professor Patrick Devine-Wright - perhaps he was not but either way I learnt that I still find it difficult to understand the not in my back yard mentality.

2. What aspect of this week did you find difficult?

Trying to get a decent picture of some of the new buildings showing how building design is now incorporating energy saving/generating technology without being blown off my bike, rained on or run-over.

3. What did you find most interesting? And why?

Yes question 1 of the quiz:

"What is the maximum amount of the UK’s electricity requirements that could potentially be generated from renewable sources?"

With the answers of: 5, 11, 17.8, 28.1 and 50%.

When I read that question I read the words “could” and “potentially” and then asked the question with those two words the answer surely is 100% “could potentially” be generated from renewable sources. The answer based on the information within the module was 11% but I think that was the answer to a different question one of:

How much of the UK's current annual (2012-2013) power supply make up is from renewable sources?

With that in mind the question and the answer did not really match together very well in my opinion.

4. Was there something that you learned this week that prompted you to do your own research?

Sorry guys but so far during this course I am not actually learning anything new. I guess the only thing I did learn was possible sources to show the mistake in the wording of question 1 (see below).

I did learn that often the context of the feedback questions is altered in the review. Where people were criticizing the wording of the question this got transmuted into people were wondering why we do not use 100% renewable? Come on guys that is bad form surely?

5. Are there any web sites or other online resource that you found particularly useful in furthering your knowledge and understanding?

These websites were not directly covered in the course but I used them as part of my comments regarding the issue with question 1: