All posts by Lisa Pasquale

A message to UK leaders, about Sustainability

I’ve been quite flattered and honoured to have been nominated and shortlisted for the 2016 UKGBC Rising Star award. The essay, below, was one I wrote as part of the shortlisting process. I firmly believe every word, and I do hope that UK leaders find a better way forward than the choices they’ve made (or failed to make) the last 12 months. We have a lot of work ahead of us – as a nation and a global community – and we need to all work together to build a better future for the generations that come after us. More information about the Rising Star award can be found on Su Butcher’s blog, here.

Many thanks! – Lisa Pasquale

What piece of advice would you give to government and business leaders?

The current government has backed away from investing in renewables, supporting innovation in low-energy technologies, and regulating to ensure an efficient building stock.

These priorities were laying down infrastructure to ensure the country’s long-term fuel security, thus reducing how much of the UK’s GDP is paid to oil-producing countries, and politically de-tethering the UK from foreign states. They were about decreasing the pressure on the NHS to treat medical conditions resultant from living in sub-standard housing. They were about creating a skilled workforce and developing competitive British businesses to hold sway in a greener international marketplace. They were about reducing how much money households and businesses burn in fuels, and enabling them to invest in their businesses, their children and their communities. Politicians and business leaders need to focus on building a national infrastructure that will enable the UK to economically thrive in the long-term and maintain its position as a global leader in innovation for the next century.

So, leaders: please focus on the long-game of creating economic stability by investing in these areas; those abandoned priorities actually supported very business-savvy national objectives.

Steel Frame Bicycle Refurbishment

After 18 years of loyal service across five countries, Binks (my 1997 Steel Frame LeMond) has earned a full blown makeover…

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IMG_0604  The work begins….

IMG_0605I used to work at Goodale’s Bike Shop, when I was a teenager and first bought my bike. It looks like one of the lads who built it up for me, left me hugs and kisses on the handlebars… XOXOXO

IMG_0606 Slowly coming apart…

IMG_1389Paint Stripping

IMG_1394Frame repairs

IMG_1393Bent seat stay, courtesy of a teenage driver…

IMG_1469Why the steering was gooey…

IMG_147118 years of grime, removed and ready to be made into a necklace pendant

IMG_1472Packed and ready to ship to Rourke Cycles for some frame repairs and a new paint job

IMG_0610The new paint

IMG_1390New Components

IMG_1397New 1″ Threaded Chris King headset

IMG_1479New Cinelli Criterium handlebars (40cm)… sadly, no hugs and kisses on this one!

IMG_1480Retro Cinelli Quill Stem

IMG_1478Cinelli head badge and Seat tube transfers

11102773_10100258871032346_7065795958229949592_nNewest output from the rebuild, courtesy of Brazen Studios

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Cinelli stem and handlebars with the new Shimano levers.

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Cinelli head crest

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Made in Italy Cinelli decal on the fade

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Top tube…

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Cinelli Criterium

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The preparations have begun

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And… she’s back! Paint job, courtesy of Rourke Framesets.

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Surley Seat clamp

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Cabling geting sorted

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New wheels, from Big Al, at Wheelcraft

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95% Complete, just need the pedals installed and the mechanics double-checked…

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And…. DONE!

(Ok, the track handlebars look a little bit silly, but other than that she’s gorgeous and she rides like butter!!)

Technical Risk Assessment for Low Energy Retrofits

Fuel poverty is one of the most important issues facing British households, today. In 2012, the number of households in fuel poverty in England was estimated at around 2.28 million, representing approximately 10.5% of all English households (DECC Fuel Poverty Report 2014).With rising fuel costs, it is critical that homes are refurbished to make them more energy efficient to relieve some of the stress on family budgets. The Greater London Authority has committed to supporting low-energy refurbishments on homes owned by local authorities and housing associated in the London boroughs.

The Greater London Authority (GLA) established the RE:NEW Support Team, funded by the European Investment Bank (EIB) and operated by Capita  to help local authorities and housing associations in London assist their residents by retrofitting homes. As part of this work, Six Cylinder Ltd led a specialist team, including Rickaby Thompson Associates and ArchiMetrics Ltd, to create a risk assessment process to evaluate the technical risks of different retrofit measures used for low-energy domestic retrofits. The process is uniquely aimed at evaluating and addressing the risks when various retrofit measures are combined and explaining the technical risks of retrofit in plain English.

The assessment toolkit includes a triage risk matrix to plot retrofit measures against each other with respect to the degree of their technical risk. Each retrofit measure has its own inherent risk rating and a rating when combined with any other measure. A risk score from 0, indicates measures have little or no impact on one another, whereas 3, indicates measures have inherent vulnerability and require careful design and execution. The matrix also shows which measures should be considered together, and which should never be used in combination.  At the design level, the matrix enables teams to assess which measures work well together and which combinations will have inherently higher risks and may require specialist support to ensure that this risk is mitigated.

For example, a housing association may be planning to upgrade an estate to make it more energy efficient and reduce the tenants risk of living in fuel poverty. The designer or assessor has advised a set of measures including external wall insulation, loft insulation and draught proofing and the installation of solar thermal. Each of these initiatives has inherent risks in isolation. However, in combination, the risks can be amplified. The insulation improvements will mean there is a higher risk of under-ventilation, which could lead to condensation problems and air quality issues. As such, it is vital to ensure that the retrofit account for ventilation which provides adequate air changes to the entire home to manage moisture and air quality. The matrix and risk assessment process allows the client team to progress the project, whilst transparently managing the technical risks with strategic expert advice, from the earliest possible stage of a retrofit. The assessment toolkit also includes Retrofit Watch Points, a list of high-level considerations for the Assessment, Design and Installation and Handover Stages of the project, as well as plain-English tips for key things that need to be considered with each retrofit measure.

For further information on the RE:NEW Support Programme please see GLA’s website  www.london.gov.uk/renew or contact Matt James at Matt.james@capita.co.uk

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