Building by building, from small family-run cafés to towering office complexes, the Canadian buildings sector represents an enormous opportunity to boost the bottom lines of private and public organizations, raise the competitive profile of the sector as a whole, and contribute to national goals for energy efficiency and environmental sustainability.
For more data on Canada's buildings sector, see Natural Resources Canada's Survey of Commercial and Institutional Energy Use - Buildings 2009 [PDF - 3.6 MB].
In 2009, commercial business owners and institutions spent $24 billion on energy and were responsible for consuming 14 percent of Canada's energy useFootnote 1. Despite having the potential to reduce their energy costs, many Canadian building owners and managers are uncertain about improving the energy performance of their buildings. Among the most significant barriers to implementing an energy efficiency strategy is a perceived lack of good information that is readily available and tailored to the buildings sector.
The key to transforming "talk" into "action" is knowledge - that's why the Office of Energy Efficiency's (OEE) Buildings Division puts capacity building at the top of any organization's to-do list. Find out about our workshops, publications and other resources that we have compiled developed with your specific needs in mind, and read the success stories of other organizations just like yours that are already benefitting from energy efficiency initiatives.
Energy is one of your organization's most easily controlled costs. Energy efficiency is a proven strategy to lower emissions and reduce energy use and costs. Optimizing energy use isn't just a smart business practice - it also demonstrates corporate responsibility.
So why isn't the Canadian buildings sector more actively involved with energy efficiency initiatives? Now is the time to take the lead in improving your energy performance. Canada's population is growing - and so is our economy. More people and more jobs require more buildings as global trends push our country toward a more service-oriented and knowledge based economy. Begin implementing changes that will lower your energy costs, decrease your energy consumption and support Canada's commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Make the change
Change is rarely easy. And to become truly energy efficient, you will need to adopt policies and procedures that will impact on your organization as well as on the behaviour of your building occupants. The good news is that these changes need not be drastic or costly. They simply require the support of your senior managers and an implementation plan that introduces each change to your entire operation at the same time. Giving consideration to key concepts such as energy management best practices, the building life cycle, integrated design and the steps to implement your energy management actions, can help you to effect lasting change in the way that your organization approaches energy management.
Through the ecoENERGY Efficiency for Buildings initiative, we provide strategic and tactical resources to support your energy management efforts. We work with executives, facility managers, entrepreneurs and other professionals in the commercial and institutional buildings sector to develop, deliver and drive programs that improve energy efficiency and support a thriving Canadian economy. Our program is organized to support:
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