Council launches Canada's first zero carbon building standard
This standard assesses carbon use in commercial, institutional and multi-family buildings in Canada, according to a press release. To achieve large-scale market transformation, it was designed to be broadly applicable for many types of new and existing buildings across the country.
It is also the only program of its kind to make carbon reductions the key indicator for building performance.
The standard's focus on carbon is crucial, officials say, as the most important factor in the carbon footprint of a building is often not energy performance, but the carbon intensity of the local electrical grid and the fossil fuels used. Recognizing these differences is pivotal to accurately assessing impacts and guiding investments in energy efficiency, heating technologies and renewable energy, they say.
"While there is no doubt that Canada's building sector has been dramatically transformed over the last two decades, the time has come to be bolder and more ambitious. The CaGBC's Zero Carbon Building Standard brings focus to carbon emissions reduction, and defines new levels of building performance," said Thomas Mueller, president and CEO of the CaGBC. "This standard will help the building industry to show leadership in eliminating emissions from buildings and contribute to shaping of Canada's climate future."
The Zero Carbon Building Standard is part of a larger CaGBC Zero Carbon Building Initiative that was created to champion the move to lower-carbon commercial, institutional and high-rise residential buildings in support of Canada's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030.
It was developed by CaGBC and Integral Group, in extensive consultation with representatives from more than 50 industry organizations, utilities, governments and companies across Canada.
CaGBC is also working with 16 of Canada's most sustainable projects in the Zero Carbon Building Pilot Program. The participating projects will inform further development of the Standard and accompanying resources and education.
The full requirements are now publically available in the official Zero Carbon Building Standard, which can be downloaded the CaGBC website by visiting cagbc.org/zerocarbon. Project registration for the Standard will open Sept. 5.
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