Energy efficiency in new buildings

Energy efficiency in the buildings sector is essential to address climate change. That is because buildings are a significant source of energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in Canada.

Energy efficiency delivers many other benefits. Buildings designed to use less energy ultimately save money for owners, managers and occupants, including tenants. A commitment to efficient design may also attract investors who value environmentally responsible and sustainable building practices.

Find out how energy management best practices can help your organization and how to incorporate them into your operations.

ENERGY STAR® multifamily high-rise (new construction) pilot program

Natural Resources Canada is investing in innovative energy-efficient projects and programs to drive economic growth, contribute to our clean energy future, and create quality jobs for Canadians.

The 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 building code and other program requirements. It will also help builders adopt energy efficient practices when constructing new mid and high-rise residential buildings.

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.

Natural Resources Canada has signed a licence agreement with EnerQuality Corporation to deliver this pilot program in Ontario, which will test the program’s effectiveness to lay the foundation for possible future expansion. For more information, please contact: info@enerquality.ca.

Best practices for maximizing energy efficiency

Commit to an integrated design process

The integrated design process takes a holistic approach to design and construction. It relies on every member of the project team working together to incorporate energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainable green design features into as many aspects of the building as possible. The process enables the team to optimize systems and minimize operating and maintenance costs.

Invest in energy efficiency early in your building's life cycle

Greater energy efficiency begins at planning and designing, because new construction offers the best opportunity for integrating energy efficiency measures. Implementing energy retrofits in existing buildings is typically a much more expensive proposition.

Strive for high standards of excellence

Consider building to sustainable building standards such as the Canada Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. As a minimum, aim for compliance with the National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings.

Include commissioning in your construction plan

Effective commissioning will ensure that all building systems function as planned to optimize energy efficiency.

Take the 2030 Challenge

Endorsed by the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada, the 2030 Challenge calls on design professionals to actively engage in lowering fossil fuel use in building construction and operation. The challenge proposes that all new buildings, developments and major renovations be carbon neutral by 2030.

Aim for an ENERGY STAR score of 75 or higher

This score is designed to show that you have achieved top building energy performance using ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager.

Celebrate your success

Take pride in your energy efficiency achievements. Promote them to make sure that your building occupants and customers know the value of what you have accomplished. Check out their success stories to learn how you can do the same.

Canada’s national energy code

MNECB, standard for energy performance, Canadian Codes Centre, compliance paths, CAN-QUEST

Commissioning for new buildings

Building systems, building monitoring, building energy efficiency optimization, DABO commissioning software

The best way to keep apprised of updates to Portfolio Manager updates and activities is to sign up for the Heads Up: Building Energy Efficiency newsletter. If you have any questions, please contact us at info.services@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca.