Energy Efficiency in the Built Environment

 

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This project will develop practical strategies and policy recommendations to increase energy efficiency in BC’s built environment, which currently accounts for about 10 percent of provincial GHG emissions. The built environment is a complex intertwined multi-scale system of cities, towns and neighbourhoods whose energy performance is shaped by factors such as building design and the behaviour of its inhabitants, as well by the infrastructure that serves those buildings. Therefore the types and location of buildings and how they are designed, built and operated will be central to reducing emissions.

The project team will evaluate many facets toward achieving significantly improved building energy performance and, where possible, net-positive energy buildings. Potential contributions from evolving green building codes, standards, design and new innovations will be explored. The roles of district energy systems and bioenergy sources will be reviewed, as will best practices for increasing building inhabitants’ support for, and engagement with, energy efficiency measures. Financing options for energy efficiency retrofits for existing buildings will also be analyzed along with tax and utility-based energy-efficiency incentives, following a rigorous review of international best practices.  A key outcome will be to generate practical solutions that can be implemented on the ground by building industry professionals and stakeholders.

Project lead: Dr. Ray Cole, Academic Director, UBC Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability (CIRS)

Year 1 Update 

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