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CIBSE Yorkshire putting building services in the spotlight


Now that the dust has settled on #ceyh2016  we want to thank you all for contributing to making it such a great night and for all of the incredible entries to the competition. Our judges had a tough, but enjoyable time reviewing, discussing and agreeing which projects stood out just that bit more than the others. This year’s judging has been the most difficult yet and with many excellent projects  already underway in our region at the moment we know that #ceyh2017 will be even harder!

We also wanted to let you know about our friends at CIBSE Yorkshire who are running their own awards for the first time this year. They are keen to raise the profile of building services within the region and celebrate the whole team that contributes to the amazing schemes which are being delivered throughout the country by companies based in the region.

If you would like to know more about it visit—2016.aspx while their Chairman, Simon Owen is more than happy to talk with you directly about how you can get involved. His contact number is 07971 695 625 or you can email him on

Simon and the rest of the committee are all volunteers, so they are organising the event alongside their “day jobs”. With their closing date being the 22nd July, you have chance to get your entry in and benefit from momentum that you have gained with your partners at our own awards and be ready to be recognised on the 18th November at their ceremony at the Royal Armouries. It’s high time we celebrated the diversity that is the building services profession  as well as recognising the vital contribution that this part of the supply chain makes to the finished project .Therefore we encourage you to support CIBSE Yorkshire in leading the way with the first regional focussed building services awards away from London and get those entries in today!

LEEDS Beckett are proud to sponsor the inaugural CIBSE awards which recognises the importance of full supply chain involvement.

Leeds_Beckett_268 purpleCIBSEsponsor

Research Assistant opportunity with Leeds Sustainability Institute

Job Title: Research Assistant
Job Reference: AET292591A
Application Closing Date: 26/02/2016
Location: Leeds
Salary: Grade 4 (*GBP*24,298 – *GBP*28,143 per annum)
Package: Please refer to Job Description and Employee Specification
Job Category/Type: Academic/Research

Job description :
The building, energy and sustainability research group within the Leeds Sustainability Institute has a wide and innovative research portfolio working with major public sector and industry partners. This is an opportunity to contribute to exciting and industry leading projects working alongside the existing team.

The work will involve creating and analysing building energy performance models and analysis of quantitative and qualitative data from the field in occupied and unoccupied buildings. The role focuses on modelling and quantitative analysis of buildings and on undertaking forensic investigations energy useage and occupant behaviour.

The successful application will collaborate on a number of research projects involving data acquisition and statistical analysis.

You will be working within the LSI alongside a team of researchers.

Key competencies:

– Awarded (or in the final stages of obtaining) a PhD (or equivalent experience) in buildings, data analytics, physics or an energy related discipline.
– A strong understanding of appropriate quantitative and qualitative research methods, with an aptitude to learn and develop further modelling skills.

Desired attributes (preferred but not all essential):

– A proven track record of publication.
– Experience of working with modelling software (ideally dynamic thermal simulation software such as IES Virtual Environment or DesignBuilder)

Job responsibilities include:

– Propose, design, and conduct quantitative research, while advising research teams on the application of analytical methods.
– Communicate project progress and author reports in collaboration with the team.
– Contribute towards a new grant application to continue the collaboration.

Click here for job description and employee specification

To apply visit the Leeds Beckett University jobs page, search for the above job and follow the instructions on screen.

Please note that this job description and employee specification will no longer be available after the closing date so please download or print now!

Leeds Beckett University values the diversity of its workforce and student population and welcomes applications from all sections of the community.? We particularly welcome applications from black and minoritised ethnic candidates as these groups are currently under-represented at our University.

Student Presentations event Thursday 17th December 2015

Our very own Leeds Beckett University students will be holding presentations on Thursday 17th December 2015 from 11.30am to 1.30pm .  This event is open to all our GreenVision and Knowledge exchange supporters and will take place in our Northern Terrace site, Room NTG14, Queen Square Court , Leeds, LS2 8AG.  Please come along to see some fantastic presentations by our students!

Here are the full details:-

BSc (Hons) Building Services Engineering

Low Carbon Buildings & Renewables

Group Allocations

Group Project 1st choice Presentation
Group A Options for a community energy scheme at Weaver’s Triangle, Burnley Wayne Fullbrook, Zack Taylor 11.30 – 11.45 plus 5 minutes questions
Group B Achieving low carbon building standards at a proposed mixed tenure housing development comprising 50 dwellings to be located off Sandygate, Burnley Craig Robinson, Michael Hutchinson 12.50 – 13.05 plus 5 minutes questions
Group C Developing a low energy lighting scheme for the Leeds Liverpool Canal from Weavers Triangle to Centenary Way Matthew Hamer, Dominic Jesper 11.50 – 12.05 plus 5 minutes questions
Group D Options for the regeneration of 4 Healey Wood Road, Burnley James Hall, Andrew Owens 12.30 – 12.45 plus 5 minutes questions
Group F The canal as an energy resource Benjamin Bushby, Reanna EvansIan Drysdale 12.10 – 12.25 plus 5 minutes questions


Leeds Sustainability Institute Event – Pattern recognition for building health


Using pattern recognition software to monitor the health of complex assets and processes in the energy industry

Wednesday 25th November 2015 at 2.00pm
The Business Lounge, Leeds Beckett University,
Old Broadcasting House, 148, Woodhouse Lane, Leeds LS2 9EN

Speaker: John McAvoy, Cybula Ltd

Improvements in collection and storage of massive volumes of data are often not matched by the ability to interpret or exploit it. Cybula develops pattern recognition algorithms based on this data. Come along and hear how Cybula has proposed an innovative visualisation approach to solving this problem, helping increase efficiency and safety in power generation. In the back drop to forthcoming ESOS legislation this software has the potential to provide opportunities to energy managers in all sectors of the economy.

All welcome including non-members as guests.

From little SEEDS… celebrating research and development with our International Conference and grand finale RISE awards

Sustainable, Ecological, Engineering Design for Society Conference

Rosebowl, Leeds Beckett University
17th & 18th September 2015

The Leeds Sustainability Institute at Leeds Beckett University are proud to be hosting this inaugural conference which aims to foster ideas, through research and proven practice, on how to reduce negative impacts on the environment while providing for the health of society. Our two day event will address the interdependence of people, the built and natural environments, and explore the interdisciplinary and international themes required to assemble the knowledge required for positive change.

The built environment has a greater impact on natural resources and produces more waste than any other industry. However, beyond the green rhetoric, research is being applied on the ground to address the balance between the built and natural environment. The aim of the International SEEDS Conference is to foster ideas, through research and proven practice, on how to reduce negative impacts on the environment while providing for the health of society. The professions and fields of research required to ensure buildings meet user demands and provide healthy enclosures are many and diverse. The SEEDS conference addresses the interdependence of people, the built and natural environments, and recognises the interdisciplinary and international themes required to assemble the knowledge required for positive change.

The Conference will bring together experts from around the world to focus on the impact of the built environment, the changes that are taking place in the industry, and the benefits and consequences of change that are being predicted and measured. The focus of discussion and debate will be on understanding how buildings and spaces are designed and nurtured to obtain the optimal outcome. As well as addressing technical issues, measuring energy efficiency and modelling energy performance, emphasis will be placed on the health and wellbeing of the users of spaces occupied. This holistic approach will draw together the research themes of energy, building performance and physics while placing health, wellbeing and ecology at the heart of the Conference.


Keynote Speakers
  • Tom Cox – R & D Manager, Saint-Gobain
  • Professor Simon Robinson – Leeds Beckett University
  • Mike Ormesher – Technical Director Northern Europe, KNAUF
  • Professor Eric Rondeau –  The University of Lorraine, France
  • Professor Malcolm Bell – Leeds Beckett University
  • Professor Paul Chatterton – The University of Leeds
  • Professor Chris Gorse – Leeds Beckett University
  • Professor Alice Owen – The University of Leeds


Click here to book your place!

Your booking will include two days attendance at the conference as well as two evening dinners including attendance at Friday night’s Grand Finale, the inaugural RISE Awards (further information here)

Introducing our conference finale… 


Friday 18th September, Park Plaza Hotel, Leeds

Click here for more info

The Greenest Buildings in the World? – the Living Building Challenge

By Mark Warner, Sustainability Manager, Leeds Beckett University (first posted on Low Carbon Leeds)

George Monbiot, via his book ‘Heat’, first introduced me to the absolute truth that:

Efficiency just means you can do more with less, which equals growth!”

Or, at best, we will maintain current levels of consumption which we know is already too much (three planets to much).

Coupled with the fact that we all need to pay the mortgage, feed ourselves and our families and put clothes on our backs; how do we continue to prosper on an economic basis, reduce our environmental impact and have a positive social impact (through our buildings in this instance)?

Enter the concept of The Living Building Challenge. An American standard. A tough one at that. There are three levels of certification, listed here from easiest to toughest;

  1. The Net Zero Energy Certification
  2. Petal Certification
  3. Living Building CertificationLiving Building Challenge logo

My stats on this will be slightly wrong but there are roughly 250 projects that have achieved Net Zero or Petal certifications. But no one has achieved the Living Building Certification.

So, what’s so good about this standard? For me it’s the philosophy of buildings being restorative rather than just ‘less bad’. To get the top slot you have to generate 105% of the electrical energy consumed by the building, treat and produce 105% of the water consumed and you can only build on brownfield sites (unless you can demonstrate an educational need to be fulfilled).

There are more challenges, but these three examples highlight the point of the restorative philosophy. Simply put, you are putting more energy and water back in than you take out. Building on a brownfield site is a brave move for any organisation as there will be a number of issues that will not be attractive; hazardous waste to deal with (old gas sites for example), run down surrounding areas, potential issues of crime to name a few.

But what better way to have a positive impact on society than to build a building (and surrounding biodiverse area) that is a shining example of what can be achieved by individuals who want to make a difference?

There are advantages, lower rates and financial incentives from councils to build in these areas. Imagine starting a trend and turning an area around into a thriving, sought after, business park and making a profit as a result? This would seem to suggest that doing the right thing could be profitable…

Living Building Challenge Aspects - Petals

Sitting within the Estates Team at Leeds Beckett University we are continually pushing sustainability. All of our contractors are achieving recycling rates of 95% plus and energy efficiency is a key factor in all designs. We have made it clear that we want investment appraisals (not cost savings on the project budget) and every option is considered from a whole-life-costing point of view, we specify recycled content in materials (information on this is surprisingly scarce when you dig into the detail) and space options are filled down to ensure buildings are the right size for their purpose. We’ve achieved BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology) and Passivhaus standards and everyone is pleased. Rightly so, but… I’m hoping we get the go ahead for a building that will get us the Living Building Challenge full certification for the Leeds Sustainability Institute.

If we get the go ahead I’m looking forward to challenging current standards and taking my team, the wider estates team, and the design team on an educational journey that will be continued by our post graduate and research teams as well as the people who use the facility.

The New Zealand Education Act specifically states that one of the purposes of a university is to ‘be the social conscience and critic of society’. A building built to such high standards is a good public statement of this purpose.

There are already some good examples around, with one of my favourites being the Packard Foundation HQ.

Restorative has to be the way to go. To the construction industry it must seem like the vegan equivalent for building standards but after the Living Buildings Challenge there is Biomimicary………and the truly organic building.

Mark Warner

Mark Warner is the Sustainability Manager at Leeds Beckett University.  He works within the Estates Team advising on sustainable construction, energy efficiency/carbon reduction, sustainable transport and sustainable purchasing of goods, services and materials.

It’s time to “Learn from Nature” #gvis2015


“Look deep into nature, and you will understand everything” Albert Einstein

Green Vision recommences with our Green Construction and Assembly Spring Series

Our Spring GreenVision series will explore sustainability issues relating to the Construction and Assembly processes within the Built Environment. Aligned to our Living Building Challenge UK collaborative, the topics in this series will consider innovative restorative sustainability and net positive approaches. Join us on our evening seminars with leading sustainability thinkers and our half day GreenBIM conference in association with thinkBIM in April.

Our first twilight event on 11th February will focus on learning from our natural environment & will feature presentations & discussions around biomimicry. Biomimicry seeks solutions from nature to address sustainability in the construction life cycle, not only for materials but also systems and processes. Our speakers are;

Richard James MacCowan (Director and Co-Founder,Biomimicry UK )

Re-thinking Nature

The world that we live in faces enormous challenges such as climate change, food security, biosphere integrity and freshwater use. Nature can play a strong role to tackle some of the most pressing challenges of our time. Solutions are at our fingertips, they are cost effective and we know how to implement them. Richard’s talk will focus on developments, research, case studies and future opportunities that this vital strand of sustainability can offer our industry.

Yaniv Peer (Associate – Exploration)

Radical Nature

At a time when architecture and society urgently need to reconsider their relationship to the natural world there are few more exciting and innovative ways to find solutions to our current and future challenges than the discipline known as Biomimicry. This field uses nature as a mentor, learning from its ingenious adaptations that have undergone 3.8 billion years of research and development to produce exceptionally well evolved solutions. This talk will explore three projects of the London based Exploration Architecture Ltd and how it is that they use biomimicry in their work to offer new solutions to some of the biggest challenges we face today. 


“Stimulating and open discussion make the events a must for construction professionals who wish to improve the performance of buildings”

Jonathan Lindh – Leda Ltd


Other dates for your diary

Water the new carbon

Wednesday 11th March 15, 17:30-19:30

Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP, 2 Park Lane, Leeds


GreenBIM Half-day Conference

Wednesday 1st April 15, 13:00-17:30

Squire Patton Boggs (UK) LLP, 2 Park Lane, Leeds

Living Building Challenge UK

LBC_logo_clear_no2The UK Living Building Challenge Collaborative met this week at Squire Patton Boggs in Leeds and saw construction professionals, architects, landscape architects, software vendors, sustainability experts and representatives from Leeds Beckett University discuss Standard V3 and the future of the UK Collaboratives.

Martin Brown gave an inspiring introduction to version 3.0, launched earlier in the year, covering the standards principles, petals and key imperatives. This was followed with a great discussion on the Living Building Challenge and relevance in the UK sector.

Martin emphasised that the Challenge is ‘A visionary path to a regenerative future’. Whereas other standards are focused on doing ‘less bad,’ the Living Building Challenge is based on the philosophy of doing more good, that is, restorative sustainability. We should no longer be satisfied with creating buildings that have negative impacts however small they may be, but look to create buildings, structures, and communities that contribute back to the environment and nature.

The Living Building Challenge uses a less technical, but more powerful, softer language than most standards, and puts topics such as beauty, education and biophilic design back into the equation.

Many present commented that a welcomed aspect was the inclusion of ‘health, happiness, beauty, nature’ within the standard.

Indeed the standard uses a metaphor of a flower, with seven petals, each of which comprises of several imperatives, 20 in total. All of these must be met in order to obtain full certification and the status of a Living Building.  We heard there are currently 201 registered projects worldwide.

2015 Plans

We are currently the only collaborative in the UK, however, we will be sharing this status with London due to launch in the spring and interest is growing elsewhere across the country.

During 2015 we will explore each of the Petals individually through workshops which will be held on the second Wednesday of each month, before the Green Vision evening and half day sessions. The timetable will be:

February 11th – Place

March 11th – Water

April 22nd- Energy

May 13th – Health & Happiness

June 10th – Materials

July 8th – Equity

August 5th – Beauty

To drive these workshops, we are looking for ‘champions’ to head each ‘petal’. If you feel that you are an expert on any of the standard areas, or passionate about specific imperatives, or just want to get involved please send us an email at

We will also deepen the relationship with projects interested in registering and pursuing certification. And the exciting news here is that we have one potential project ready to register and other in development. Other activities will include design competitions, project charrette support, and a UK overlay to the International Standard with terminology, regulations and standards appropriate to the UK sector.

We are also compiling a library of UK building case studies that illustrate Living Building Challenge concepts. If you are aware of any projects, your own perhaps that addresses any of the standard imperatives or philosophies please do let us know for inclusion into our library.

We look forward to you joining our Collaboratives and getting involved, with your projects perhaps, in this exciting new era for built environment sustainability.

As Martin has said many times, ‘it’s time to heal the future’…

Great healthy buildings & workplace productivity discussion at last night’s #gvis2014

GreenVision & thinkBIM Presents – GREENBIM Conference on the 3rd December 2014

This Conference pairs two revolutionary movements of Green Building and BIM to create environmentally friendly design through streamlined process.

Join thinkBIM & GreenVision at WSP Leeds on 3rd December 14. The day will include a range of Construction professional speakers and roundtables!

For more details and to book your place Click Here

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