Turning the Talk into the Walk: How Does a City Achieve Net Zero?


WHEN March 5, 2024
5:30-8 PM WHERE NYU Abu Dhabi Conference Center (A6) WHO Center for Interacting Urban Networks (CITIES) Open to the Public

According to the UN, cities are responsible for nearly three-quarters of global carbon emissions. One of the cities’ biggest culprits? The built environment. Pledges to decarbonize cities, including the built environment, abound. It is clear that the climate is in crisis and that we need to make significant changes — but how do we move past exploring ambitions and strategies to create a meaningful, achievable plan for cities to decarbonize?

Chris Wan, our guest lecturer, will present Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City as a case study in sustainable urban development. He’ll take listeners through a practical development methodology that balances passive architectural design, technology and innovation, renewable energy, and holistic master planning. He’ll also present a data-driven roadmap of Masdar City’s journey to net zero with an overview of current challenges and barriers, as well as potential solutions. 

Speaker Bio
Chris Wan, Masdar City’s associate director of sustainability and CSR, is a seasoned architect with deep expertise in sustainable architectural design. He has worked extensively in architecture, sustainability, and design management in the UK, Hong Kong, and the UAE. His current focus is advocating for sustainability and ESG at Masdar City and beyond through outreach, public education, and knowledge sharing.

Previously, Wan was the head of design management at Masdar, where he promoted a holistic approach to sustainable development that balances environmental, commercial, and social requirements. Wan’s work and leadership have led to the construction of multiple developments at Masdar City that push the boundaries of sustainable design, including a series of net-zero energy buildings. 

He holds a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Bath in the U.K. He is also a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects and the Hong Kong Institute of Architects

Part of the CITIES Lecture Series.

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