The Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) released its new Zero Carbon Building Standard on May 29, and 16 projects across the country have been selected to participate in a two-year pilot program that will allow them to assess – and improve – their environmental performance.
"The pilot projects represent a wide cross-section in terms of building type and geography, giving us a chance to showcase a range of solutions," says Thomas Mueller, the CaGBC's president and CEO. The pilot projects range in size from 20,000 to 1.3 million square feet, and include 13 new buildings, two existing buildings and one project with both new and existing building components.
Through the program, participants gain access to a group of leading professionals for advice and guidance for pursuing Zero Carbon Building – Design and Zero Carbon Building – Performance certifications. The process includes modelling a zero carbon balance, highly efficient envelope and ventilation systems, and onsite renewable energy systems, with a focus on evaluating energy use holistically, including impacts on peak electricity, and determining the greenhouse gas emissions associated with structural and envelope materials.
"At the end of the day, what matters is showing zero carbon emissions in building operations over the course of a year," explains Mr. Mueller, who adds that the buildings will also be more energy efficient compared to conventional buildings, and owners and operators will benefit from energy savings.
Find more information about the pilot projects at cagbc.org/zerocarbonpilots.
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