Compelling speaker program announced for Resilience Forum 

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

AIRAH has released the speaker program for the inaugural Resilience Forum on July 26 at UTS in Sydney.

As global climate change begins to affect us in earnest, events such as heatwaves, bushfires and flash floods are becoming more frequent, and subjecting our built environment to greater pressures. Hence the rising prominence of resilience.

“Our industry is seeing increasing emphasis put on resilience by clients and designers alike,” says AIRAH CEO Tony Gleeson, M.AIRAH. “Thanks to our long-standing Special Technical Group on resilience, AIRAH members are leaders in the field. It was a natural step to organise a national event around the concept.”

The Resilience Forum will be led by Resilience STG members Nicki Parker, M.AIRAH, and Liza Taylor, M.AIRAH. They will share the floor with an array of experts, including Johanna Trickett (Aurecon), Justin Wong (EMF Griffiths), Greg Johnson, M.AIRAH (Stockland) and Yale Carden, M.AIRAH (GeoExchange Australia).

Parker and Taylor will kick off the Forum with their presentation, “Resilience in the HVAC&R industry: Why should I care, and … what should I do about it?”

Parker says resilience is not simply about enabling buildings to withstand and bounce back from extreme weather, utilities failures and other catastrophic events.

“Resilient HVAC&R can directly address the No.1 opportunity to reverse climate change with better refrigerant management, as well as reducing energy costs, extending asset life and improving comfort,” she says. “As property owners, engineers,

HVAC&R manufacturers, contractors and facilities managers, we all have a role to play in future-proofing our buildings and safeguarding our most important assets: our people.”

The one-day Forum will address the impacts on energy and comfort if we fail to address building resilience at the start of projects, as well as how changing climates impact resilient design.

Speakers at the inaugural Resilience Forum will discuss topics as diverse as “Building energy performance in a changing climate”; “Designing for HVAC resilience through the lens of thermal potential”; “A survey of resilient design measures for building envelope and HVAC&R systems”; and “Assessing vulnerability and resilience in commercial property.”

“We will have speakers covering issues ranging across design, city-scale and insurance perspectives, who will talk about why resilient buildings is a topic that affects us all,” Parker says. “As the industry widens its focus from holistic sustainability to how assets perform during operation in extreme events and a changing climate, we are seeing the awareness of resilient buildings increasing, and becoming a more important driver in client briefs.

“The ability to withstand the increasing frequency of both weather emergencies and climate-based hazards can make or break assets in the built environment, and we need to design, build and operate for this instead of reacting to problems and damage afterwards. True resilience requires a preparedness, which should result overall in a more cost-effective outcome.”

For more information about the Resilience Forum 2018, go to

Thanks to our sponsors: A.G. Coombs and BlueScope Steel.