Welcome back to our "Getting to carbon positive" podcasts series, where our leaders discuss how our post-COVID-19 recovery and rebuild opportunities could support decarbonising New Zealand and contribute to a future of sustainable prosperity.

COVID-19 has shown us that disruption and challenges to the way we all work, can be a real catalyst for unlocking opportunities. It forced organisations and people to quickly change the way they work, with many of us working from home during lockdown and then changing the way we continue to work in this “new normal”. This change has made many reconsider what a “normal” office environment now looks like, opening up even more opportunities to think differently and innovatively about how buildings are designed.

In Episode 6 of our Getting to Carbon Positive podcast series, Scott Smith and Andre Kirstein sit down with our host, Kate Meyer, to discuss transitions in the built environment.

They share their views on the importance of rethinking the objectives of buildings and the value of making decisions around what materials to use in the early stages of a project; such as timber which has massive benefits in terms of carbon reduction and has changed the landscape of embodied carbon for buildings.

Also discussed is how to ensure you don’t lock-out opportunities e.g. by creating an environment of challenge, engaging early in the design process with people who are best placed to identify carbon opportunities, and by thinking long-term about the design of the building. They also touch on how to approach the design process going forward.

The overall message of this podcast is clear – there is massive opportunity in the built environment and it’s an important time to change.


Make everyday better · Getting to carbon positive: Episode 6 - Built environment


For more insights, check out our full report on 'Decarbonising a prosperous New Zealand' which looks at eight key transitions that would best enable the country to rapidly shift to a low carbon economy. Or read our report on the Built Environment.

The full series can be viewed here:


Andre Kirstein

Senior Technical Director - Structural Engineering

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Scott Smith

Senior Associate – Building Services

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