Systems Zero Carbon Building: Policy and Partnership

by Dr. Wei Pan and Dr. Pingying Lin, Civil Engineering
Apr 29, 2016

On April 28, 2016, over 200 professionals and stakeholders from industry, society and academia participated in the event entitled “Systems Zero Carbon Building: Policy and Partnership” held at The University of Hong Kong. This event marks HKU’s leading research on zero carbon building policy and partnership. Zero carbon building has emerged as a most innovative approach to addressing anthropogenic climate change which has imposes a severe challenge to human mankind and society. The Paris Agreement has explicitly recommended low carbon development as an imperative strategy, and in Hong Kong the government has pledged to turn the city into a low carbon metropolis.

“Systems Zero Carbon Building: Policy and Partnership”

This event integrated a Hong Kong Zero Carbon Partnership (HKZCP) Seminar which is part of an initiative funded by the Construction Industry Council (CIC) and a zero carbon building Public Policy Research (PPR) Forum which is part of a research project funded by the Central Policy Unit (CPU) of the HKSAR government. The HKZCP initiative aims to help position Hong Kong as a world-class knowledge-based, innovation-driven and multi-stakeholder-engaged hub for zero carbon building in urban environments. The HKZCP has attracted support from a wide range of stakeholder groups covering the demand, supply, regulation and institutional aspects of building in Hong Kong and beyond. The policy research aims to examine the opportunities, risks and recommendations for establishing a possible zero carbon building policy for Hong Kong. Dr Wei Pan, Principal Investigator for both projects, advocates zero carbon buildings as complex socio-technical systems, effectively addressing which requires the exploration of systems approach.

Group photo with speakers

A team of renowned overseas and local speakers shared with the audience the state-of-the-art international zero carbon building research, policy and stakeholder engagement. Ir Prof CK Mak, Vice Chairman of HKU Centre for Innovation in Construction and Infrastructure Development (CICID) kicked off the event by welcoming all participants, which was followed by Ir Dr Christopher To, Executive Director of CIC, who in his Opening Speech outlined the initiatives of CIC on zero carbon building referring to the Paris Agreement and urged all to collaborate to take up the opportunities. After that, Dr Wei Pan, Associate Director of CICID, who is Principal Investigator for both projects reported on research and emphasised on the socio-technical systems approach to addressing carbon reduction challenges and developing a Hong Kong model. Following that, Mr Rob Pannell, Managing Director of Zero Carbon Hub, UK, and Mr Joe Huang, President of White Box Technologies, California, US, contributed international research and practices of building zero carbon and energy simulation and performance. Dr Margaret Kam on behalf of Prof Wei Xu of China Academy of Building Research presented on the APEC’s Nearly Zero Energy Building Programme. Ir Frank Chan, Director of EMSD of HKSAR government and Ir Cary Chan, Executive Director of Hong Kong Green Building Council, shared a Hong Kong perspective of building energy policy and strategy and low carbon building beyond regulations, respectively. A plenary session furthered the debate, which was moderated by Ir Prof Sam Chan, Associate Director of CICD, followed by Closing Remarks delivered by Prof Thomas Ng, Executive Director of CICID, who thanked all speakers and participants and advocated systems research and practices of zero carbon building.

HKZCP Membership as of April 2016

For interest in zero carbon building research at HKU contact Dr Wei Pan at or (852) 2859 2671.