top of page
ECN icon03_edited.png
HCN icon1.png
RCN icon1.png

Thursday 22 February 2024

Net Zero and Decarbonisation
Laura Luckhurst - Ruane-CDC
Ishita Pandey - Ruane-CDC
Sarah Wigglesworth - Sarah Wigglesworth Architects
Nadia Persaud - LocatED

Venue: The Building Centre, 26 Store Street, London, WC1E 7BT

Time; 7.45 - 10.15am

“Transitioning to a net-zero world is one of the greatest challenges humankind has faced. It calls for nothing less than a complete transformation of how we produce, consume, and move about.”

United Nations

According to the UK Green Building Council, 19% of the UK’s carbon footprint is from operational emissions, from energy needed to heat, cool and power our buildings and 80% of buildings which will be occupied in 2050 already exist, meaning decarbonising existing stock is a major priority.


The government commissioned a review into its approach to ensure that delivering the net zero target does not place undue burdens on businesses or consumers and is “pro-business and pro-growth”. 

Come and join us as our panel of experts look to discuss:

  • The definition of sustainability & net-zero in the construction industry.

  • What are the most effective ways due reduce emissions?

  • How can we go beyond the targeted NetZero Carbon aspirations?

  • What are the environmental and social impacts?


Laura Luckhurst

Laura is a mechanical engineer by background and has worked on a number of Operationally Net Zero projects in the last 2 years. Her role involves mechanical and public health elements, as well as reviewing the operational and embodied carbon implications for projects. Laura works to provide cost effective carbon saving solutions for clients, and regularly makes the business case for fully electric installations,


Through her work assessing operational energy usage using CIBSE’s TM54 methodology Laura focuses on the energy balance required on site, and as part of her role as embodied carbon lead at RCDC, has been developing the company’s embodied carbons strategy, alongside performing a number of WLC assessments using OneClick LCA and CIBSE TM65.

With the climate crisis affecting more and more of the earth’s resources, Laura has recently been working to review ‘where next?’ for the sustainability proposals she is suggesting for projects.

Ishita Pandey

Ishita is a Sustainability Engineer at RCDC, having moved into the sustainability and environmental design field after working as an architect in India. As an architect she worked on a diverse range of projects, with a particular passion for projects that had a positive impact on communities and the environment. Her passion for environmental conservation and love for the built environment led her to the sustainability sector in construction. Within RCDC, Ishita is involved in all aspects of the sustainability discipline including Whole Life Carbon, Operational energy, BREEAM, Daylighting and EPC assessments.

Following her design philosophy of user centric energy efficient solutions, her master’s research centred on Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE). This helped her develop a deep understanding of the complexities related to the interdependency of different services within a building as well as its users.

The broad experience of an architect, and now as an engineer has given Ishita an appreciation for using the right tools at the right time, and the importance of taking a holistic approach to sustainability proposals. Recognizing the broader impact of design decisions on each other and on the climate crisis, Ishita strives to strike a delicate balance. She works to propose user-oriented solutions with low environmental impact, to sustainable, effective, and harmonious outcomes. D

ue to the breadth of what is considered to be sustainability, and her passion for holistic and practical solutions, Ishita is passionate about encouraging project teams to think outside of their discipline when working on projects to consider the wider impacts for people, building operation, the environment and society.

Sarah Wigglesworth
Sarah Wigglesworth Architects

Sarah Wigglesworth founded her own practice based in London in 1993, and since then has been pioneering an approach to building using low energy principles and materials in a highly innovative way, and theorising it. The best known example if this approach is the award-winning Straw Bale House in London, published worldwide. The practice has subsequently built a number of award-winning across a range of sectors and continues to champion its concept of Eco-Humanism, wherein people are placed at the heart of the sustainability equation.


Between 1997 and 2016 Sarah was Professor of Architecture at The University of Sheffield  where she headed the DWELL (Designing for Wellbeing in Environments for Later Life) research project that aims to design exemplary places for older people. She has co-authored several books and has lectured globally. She was awarded an MBE for services to architecture in 2003 and was created Royal Designer for Industry in 2012.

Nadia Persaud


Nadia has worked in project management and policy development for over 26 years with experience across all sectors and a robust background in legal aid, sustainability, management information and justice estate reform. With LocatED since January 2017, she led on the creation of an effective programme management office function to support the successful project delivery of a start-up property company to an established, reliable, trusted delivery arm of the Department for Education.


Through this work Nadia sought out opportunities to improve core processes and drive change across all business areas by developing simple but effective governance frameworks that facilitate decision-making processes and committee operations alongside ensuring our corporate governance obligations are discharged.


With an excellent understanding and experience of climate change adaption and resilience, Nadia is one of the key team members leading on the Net Zero Accelerator programme, that will facilitate the rapid rollout of decarbonisation initiatives across the education estate.

bottom of page