Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Quantifying the Effects of Projected Climate Change on the Durability and Service Life of Housing in Wales, UK

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-02-07, 14:22 authored by Carolyn HaylesCarolyn Hayles, Matt Huddleston, Paul Chinowsky, Jacob Helman
This research aimed to provide the Welsh Government with measured and quantified climate vulnerabilities associated with housing building-fabric, including the potential financial cost of not planning for climate change. Wales’s climate is projected to become warmer but wetter and it is known that hygrothermal impacts can accelerate deterioration, leading to damp and, subsequently, a loss of thermal performance. A stressor-response methodology was applied, which assumes that the exogenous stressors of solar flux, precipitation, and humidity have a direct effect on building-fabric performance. The resultant stressor-response values equate to the quantitative impact that a specific stressor has on individual specific building elements, presented as an adjusted service life and associated costs. Results show a modest reduction in the service life of building materials due to increases in and changing patterns of precipitation and subsequent moisture ingress. Although modest, with 1.5 million dwellings in Wales, the impact is significant. Advocating regular maintenance and repair will not only reduce the risks associated with changing weather patterns, but also encourage energy efficiency by improving the thermal performance of the building envelope. This will reduce the risk of adverse climate related outcomes, increased vulnerability to climate change, now or in the future.


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Hayles, Carolyn, Matt Huddleston, Paul Chinowsky, and Jacob Helman. (2022) "Quantifying the Effects of Projected Climate Change on the Durability and Service Life of Housing in Wales, UK" Buildings 12, no. 2: 184.

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Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Art and Design

Cardiff Met Authors

Carolyn Hayles

Cardiff Met Research Centre/Group

Sustainable and Resilient Built Environment group (SuRBe)

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  • © The Authors


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