Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day from all of us at Passive House Canada!

As many in our community are aware of, buildings consume up to 40 percent of global energy use and contribute up to 30 percent of annual global greenhouse gas emissions. They are a key piece of the puzzle towards a low-carbon future.

“Before looking at producing energy more sustainably we need to reduce our consumption, that’s the Passive House standard. I see this as a great opportunity for Canadian manufacturers and building industry professionals to become global leaders,” says Marcel Studer, CPHD, CPHT, Principal, Econ Group Ltd.

“[Passive House] is the only standard that is providing the significant energy and measurable reductions that are required to meet climate targets,” echoes Mark Bernhardt, CPHC, President, Bernhardt Contracting

Industry shifts towards more sustainable building practices are coming from various directions. Marcel Studer says shifts are coming “through legislation on all levels (federal to municipal); working with incentives is a great way to speed up the transformation.” Most recently, the federal government released its first budget in over two years, including significant investments in energy efficiency improvements for the building sector in this budget, in addition to recent announcements to invest $2 billion in large-scale building retrofits and the Greening Government strategy to make all government owned buildings net zero by 2050. Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged that Canada would reduce its greenhouse gas emissions 40-45 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, a significant increase from the previous target of a 30 percent reduction in the same time frame.

A push for change is coming from consumers as well. “The shift is coming from clients who are normally not asking for energy efficiency, they are asking for comfort. To get that comfort the easiest and least cost way is through Passive House,” says Mark Bernhardt.

From a homeowner’s perspective, “Power outages and ice storms over the past 10 years along with climate change confirmed our desire to decrease our carbon foot print by building a sustainable house. Our goals were to renovate an existing house by recycling and reusing as much of the existing house as we could and building a healthy home (no building with high VOC emitting products).” Hear more from Tracy Johnson and her journey of building her dream Passive House home here.

Passive House Certified Professionals have also shared with us over the last year why it was important for them to become Certified. We love hearing from passionate industry professionals:

“The more architects, designers, and consultants preach the benefits energy efficiency, healthy living, and sustainable building then the faster we will see a transition in our built environment. By using PH as a target we will help change our industry for the better, reduce our carbon footprint and lower the strain on our infrastructure.”

– Kyle Durante, CPHD

“It was important for me to become PH certified because it is becoming increasingly critical to reduce our environmental footprint, and Passive House is a practical and well thought out standard that ensures we will.”

– Sarah Shepherd, Focal Engineering, CPHD

“Passive House Training and Certification was the first step for our company and I to make our commitment to the planet to build better. The training offered us exposure to other industry leaders, educators and scientists who are now invested in our success as we are in theirs as we bring the principles of Passive House into every project – big or small – in the future. Moving forward with an eye towards efficiency will benefit both ours and future generations.”

– Kyle Ormsby, North Village Builders, CPHT

We are thrilled to see the Passive House community grow as we work together to transform the built environment.