Heads Up: Building Energy Efficiency - October

Volume 5, Issue 10


The deadline for 2018 ENERGY STAR® certification applications for commercial/institutional buildings is November 15, 2018.  If your building receives a score of 75 or higher, it may be eligible for ENERGY STAR® certification. We look forward to receiving your application soon.

100 ENERGY STAR® certified buildings! Want to be next?

Energy Star

Building owners and managers across the country are receiving well-earned recognition for their commitment to energy efficiency through ENERGY STAR® certification for commercial and institutional buildings.

Commercial offices, K-12 schools, hospitals, medical offices, senior care communities and residential care facilities, supermarkets and food stores, and ice/curling rinks can apply now!

How do I certify?

  1. Register your building in ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager®.
  2. Benchmark your facility with at least 12 consecutive months of energy data to receive your ENERGY STAR score.

    Portfolio Manager uses a 1-100 ENERGY STAR score: a score of 50 indicates average energy performance, while a score of 75 or higher indicates top performance. Currently, seven buildings types can receive a score.

  3. If your building earns an ENERGY STAR score of 75 or higher, complete the online application in Portfolio Manager.

    Certification is approved on an annual basis, so a building must maintain its high performance to be certified year to year. A Licensed Professional must verify the information submitted in the application.

Energy benchmarking, using ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager®, helps plot your organization’s path forward to meeting your efficiency goals by identifying the key metrics for assessing the performance of your building or portfolio of buildings.

Consumers, clients, employees, and communities trust the ENERGY STAR label. They are looking for organizations that exemplify dedication to the environment. Engage with Canadian stakeholders by showcasing your commitment to a green future.

If you aren’t already benefitting from energy benchmarking, check out ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager and take a step towards achieving ENERGY STAR certification for your building.

If you’re already reaping the rewards of Portfolio Manager, find out more about applying for ENERGY STAR certification. You can also contact us at nrcan.energystarcertificationbuildings.rncan@canada.ca.



Halifax Regional Municipality saves big!

Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) partnered with Efficiency Nova Scotia to help reduce energy consumption, energy costs, and greenhouse gases associated with HRM’s portfolio of approximately 250 corporate buildings. Efficiency Nova Scotia’s Onsite Energy Manager program provides a full-time energy efficiency expert to the municipality to focus on reducing energy use in buildings and to build the business case for projects with attractive paybacks. The municipality pays half of the manager’s salary in dollars, while the other half is paid through the energy efficiency rebates obtained through the manager’s work.

It’s a partnership that is paying off. According to the municipality, Halifax is on track to save five gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity this year including $750,000 in cost savings and 3500 tons of greenhouse gas emissions. That far exceeds the goal of one GWh of savings that was established as an objective for the one-year contract.

An important tool in this success story is ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager. This free online tool allows the municipality to benchmark usage of a large portfolio of buildings, compare usage to similar buildings, and track improvements over time.

“The sharing functionality of Portfolio Manager has been a great way to provide data access to key personnel. The Halifax Regional Municipality is now tracking energy usage in its largest 80 buildings with more being added every day. It has also provided value work experience to co-op students who are leading the effort to benchmark the buildings.”
David Brushett
On-Site Energy Manager, Efficiency Nova Scotia

The HRM is well positioned to gain continued savings in years to come. It is increasing the organization’s energy awareness and engagement, and helping make organizational changes to enable continuous energy improvement into the future.

You can’t manage what you don’t measure. Energy benchmarking is a key step in achieving superior energy efficiency. Your municipality can mirror the momentum of Halifax and be on your way to realizing significant cost savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions. NRCan’s Office of Energy Efficiency is here to help. Visit us online to learn more or email us at nrcan.buildings-batiments.rncan@canada.ca

ENERGY STAR® for multifamily high-rise buildings launch

The newly-launched ENERGY STAR® Multifamily High-Rise Pilot Program will recognize buildings in Ontario that are designed 15% more energy efficient than those built to the provincial energy code and other program requirements.  Mid and high-rise builders will be able to certify that their buildings meet high energy efficiency standards with the trusted ENERGY STAR® label.

“With the increased construction of stacked townhouses and high-rises, I am proud to see the ENERGY STAR® certification being extended to multifamily high-rise buildings. This pilot program will not only contribute to the Government of Canada’s greenhouse gas emission targets, it will also reduce consumers’ energy costs, create good jobs and stimulate innovation in the housing sector.”
Amarjeet Sohi
Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources

NRCan has signed a licence agreement with EnerQuality to deliver this pilot program in Ontario, which will test the program’s effectiveness to lay the foundation for possible future expansion.

For builders and building owners, certification means lower operating costs and higher income due to increased rental value. For homeowners and tenants, it means superior energy performance leading to lower energy costs. For more information about the program, please contact: info@enerquality.ca.

New book explores Canada’s energy outlook

Written by Pierre Langlois, President of Econoler and Geneviève Gauthier, National Director of Consulting Services at Econoler, “Canadian Energy Efficiency Outlook: A National Effort for Tackling Climate Change” presents a detailed exploration of Canada’s energy sector. This collaborative effort brought together more than twenty Canadian experts and key stakeholders with a purpose of becoming a reference for how Canada has variably innovated and developed mechanisms to achieve the goal of making this country more energy efficient.

Although Canada is a vast country, one would think that with only 37 million inhabitants the energy context would be homogeneous from one ocean to another. However, across thirteen different jurisdictions, ten provinces, and three territories, there are great differences in availability of energy resources, energy costs and electricity generation carbon footprints. Add the fact that the energy sector is mostly a provincial jurisdiction and there are as many legal and regulatory frameworks as there are provinces and territories.  Within its pages, the book explores this great diversity and how it has shaped the energy efficiency sector.

For an economy the size of Canada, this wide variety of available energy resources and electricity generation carbon footprints represent a unique challenge in developing and launching coherent initiatives from one coast to another.

On the brighter side, the “Canadian Energy Efficiency Outlook: A National Effort for Tackling Climate Change” elaborates on specific themes and innovative initiatives that can serve as inspiration for Canadians wishing to contribute to the development of a pan-Canadian low-carbon economy. It may also elucidate how such a vast, sparsely populated and highly diversified country has been and is still doing much to improve energy productivity and reduce its carbon footprint. In that regard, Canada offers a lot to inspire energy efficiency stakeholders across the world.

To learn more about “Canadian Energy Efficiency Outlook: A National Effort for Tackling Climate Change”, visit their site.

Funding opportunities

NRCan provides financial assistance to support energy efficiency projects in Canada’s buildings sector to meet commitments under the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. The following programs are currently accepting proposals.

NRCan provides financial assistance to support energy labelling and disclosure projects for the commercial and institutional buildings sector. NRCan’s priority is to support provinces, territories, and municipalities implementing labelling and disclosure and other stakeholders within those jurisdictions.

Remarkable opportunities are now available for organizations looking to implement ISO 50001 in their commercial and institutional buildings, or industrial facilities. NRCan provides cost-shared financial assistance of up to 50% of eligible costs, to a maximum of $40,000 per building or facility. Moreover, this financial assistance can be combined with other funding sources where available.

Email nrcan.buildings-batiments.rncan@canada.ca with your questions or to request a project proposal template.

NRCan assesses project proposals prior to any funding approval. Project costs cannot be incurred prior to signing an agreement. The decision to approve any proposal is at the sole discretion of NRCan.

Let us know what you think

Heads Up: Building Energy Efficiency is published by Natural Resources Canada’s Office of Energy Efficiency and distributed monthly to 16,000 subscribers. Our goal is to deliver meaningful news and information about programs, services and events related to energy efficiency in commercial and institutional buildings and, as well, to share the success stories of organizations that have benefited from positive change. Help us spread the word by sending this link to your colleagues. We encourage you to subscribe to our sister publication that focuses on energy efficiency in industrial facilities, Heads Up CIPEC.

We welcome reader feedback and are always interested in your story ideas.

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The ENERGY STAR and Portfolio Manager names and the ENERGY STAR symbol are trademarks registered in Canada by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and are administered and promoted by Natural Resources Canada.