CEO Letter – May

There is lots to report at Passive House Canada as we continue to add education courses for the industry, and work with government and industry to help with the transition to a zero carbon building marketplace.

We have been critical of the pending national building code removal of air tightness testing. We are concerned that the code, as it stands today, will not advance Canada’s GHG emissions reduction required under the Paris Accord. It is interesting to see the 2020 code, to be launched this spring, has been pushed back to December 2021. We are following the development of the code and will report on our findings.

In British Columbia, the government is beginning stakeholder engagement to determine its Roadmap to 2030 to meet its sectoral emission reductions targets. Passive House Canada has been involved in the process and will work to put forward best practices and recommendations on how to achieve emissions reductions in the building and retrofit sector.

We’re also keeping a close eye on the federal government. With the possibility of an election as early as this spring, it its our opportunity to talk to all the parties about the Passive House building standard and its role in climate change mitigation and adaptation.

I draw your attention to our partner, Efficiency Canada, which has released a toolkit to help us all advocate for better building codes at the federal level. You can read more here or check out their Codes4Climate toolkit here.

And, in these waning days of Covid-19 lock downs (hopefully!), we are asked what protection a certified Passive House might offer from the spread of Covid-19. Does living or working in a certified Passive House building reduce your risk of infection?

A recent update by the CDC on how the virus is transmitted leaves us frustrated. The report now concludes, after nearly 15 months of lockdown, that airborne transmission, including aerosol particles, is the number one way people are being infected.

It has taken over a year for the CDC and other expert bodies to get to this point. We hope that more attention will now be put on mitigating risk through better ventilation – something Passive House experts agree on and know a lot about. We are frustrated that while engineers and building scientists have been seeking solutions, those in charge have not been asking them how to fix airborne transmission.