The first is a net zero question and it is whether we can ever get to net zero by 2030 when, currently, 62% of housing stock that gets assessed through EPC is below Level C. We have a long way to go to support decarbonisation through retrofits.

I’d forgotten that a few days ago I was accused of being unreasonable by a somewhat hardened environmentalist, perhaps, for suggesting that carbon offsetting is cheating the system. We could I suppose become carbon neutral by 2025 if we wanted to and bought carbon credits to make up the difference. Is this a good outcome though? How are we judging success?

It seems that in the journey towards net zero by 2030 it is net outcomes we are after as a community of environmental experts rather than absolute ones.

I suspect that with COVID, we got caught out. Even earlier this year, nobody could have forecasted that 5 years-worth of change across all sectors could happen in the space of 5 months.

Retail has changed. Where we go shopping has changed. Construction and how we build the fabric of our cities has changed. Working patterns and environments have changed. The space we call the office has changed. How we occupy it has also changed. Our home is now an office turning it into an economic product.

The need for thought leadership is now greater than ever. The intellectual space at the heart of how society operated desperately needs to be occupied.

We have a health crisis that’s in turn triggered an economic crisis that will urgently need a social recovery plan predicated on health outcomes, mental health and wellbeing preparedness, skilling an entire generation in green skills and readying everyone for a technological transition.

For our built environment, this means building green and building green jobs through a retrofit academy and energy efficiency programmes. No room for cheating or carbon off-setting trickery. It’s an all-in moment.

Brighton and Hove is in the midst of a commissioned citizens climate assembly managed by the excellent team at Ipsos Mori. The city and the transport operators have supplied little data though to understand patterns of commuting, movement, mobility and journeys.

Take London for example where open TFL data drives the innovation economy. We know that before lockdown in March 2020, a normal weekday would see out some 27m trips generated. During lockdown, these went down to 14m and currently stand at 20m. There is no hard data on walking or cycling but we know that car journeys are at 95% of their pre-COVID levels.

During lockdown, journeys on the London Underground went down to 5% of their pre lockdown average. They are now flat at about 35% with the majority blue collar workers. There are still not that many white-collar workers back using public transport signifying the death of the coffee and eat out lunches culture in London, the impact of which is still to be appreciated.

Figures like these have been the Achilles heel of the facilities management industry for some time now. FM firms have steadily throughout lockdown sang the praises of working from home without supplying data on who was happy to work from home and who had the space to do that with comfort and little disruption to other family members.

This is why I was sceptical of recent data on increased worker productivity at home during lockdown. There is a space, location, age and ethnicity dimension to this that is not getting captured by the positive data around home working.

Take for example the RSA’s, the royal society for arts, manufactures and commerce, report on automation and COVID released this week. It suggests there are signs the pandemic could rapidly accelerate the pace oftechnological change. It proposes a risk register to assess the impacts of the pandemicon different sectors in the economy. Whose jobs do you think are viable and whose are not? Over to you…