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New ICE East Midlands Chair to focus on blue-green infrastructure

07 October 2020

During ICE East Midlands Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 30 September, Ben McGrath, new ICE East Midlands Regional Chair, announced his Chair’s Programme theme for 2020-21. It will focus on blue-green infrastructure around the world.

New ICE East Midlands Chair to focus on blue-green infrastructure

Newly elected ICE East Midlands Regional Chair, Ben McGrath, has announced his Chair’s Programme for 2020-21 during ICE East Midlands Annual General Meeting on 30 September. The Programme will focus on blue-green infrastructure.

Ben is Associate Director – East Midlands at Waterman Aspen and an Associate Lecturer at the University of Derby. He teaches Transport & Infrastructure Engineering and Sustainable Design and Flood Risk Management. He also authors online content on the Civil Engineering & Construction Management master’s degree.

With both infrastructure and flood risk management close to his specialisation, Ben will focus his Chair’s Programme on how multifunctional urban infrastructure can be inspired and supported by nature, in addition to being cost-effective. During his Chair’s Programme events, he will look at how blue-green infrastructure can provide environmental, social and economic benefits, while help building resilience and adapting to the challenges of climate change.

Ben and the speakers, Nanco Dolman, a Leading Professional in Water Resilient Cities at Royal HaskoningDHV, and Dr Emily O’Donnell, a Research Fellow in Urban Flood Resilience at the University of Nottingham, will look at the best practices in blue-green infrastructure around the world and what can be applied in the East Midlands.

Talking about his programme, Ben said: “Climate change is happening now. This means that us, civil engineers, need to look to futureproof our infrastructure. Incorporating blue-green infrastructure elements in the infrastructure designs helps build more sustainable infrastructure, which is also resilient to the changing weather.”

Nanco Dolman commented: “Dr Emily O’Donnell and I are really excited to speak during the Chair’s Programme events. This will enable us to highlight current research in blue-green infrastructure and discuss important contemporary issues in the field of flood risk management, such as the application of sustainable urban drainage systems or the costs and benefits of green vs. grey infrastructure, as well as look at the best practices from all over the world.”

Jo Barnett, Regional Director, ICE East and West Midlands, said: “Ben’s Chair’s Programme is a great opportunity to bring the latest research and best practice in blue-green infrastructure from around the world and see how we can implement it in the East Midlands region to achieve not only more sustainable infrastructure but also resilient to climate change.”

The first in the series of four events will take place online on November 5 at 1pm.

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