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Canada’s new energy code due soon

Canada's new National Energy Code for Buildings is set to be published in November.


Canada’s new National Energy Code for Buildings is set to be published in November.

The code provides an overall 25% improvement in energy compared to its predecessor, the 1997 Model National Energy Code for Buildings.

The code is a companion document to Canada’s National Building Code and its requirements are expected to be adopted by the provinces and territories, who will tailor the code to their needs.

The new code was developed by both the National Research Council of Canada and Natural Resources Canada. They say that an important characteristic is its flexibility for compliance. Building engineers and designers can follow a prescriptive path, a trade-off path, and a performance path.

Natural Resources Canada says the more stringent code will save an average building $1.7 million in energy costs over its lifespan “placing Canada on an equal footing with may other OECD countries.”

Following comments and public input during the period when the code was being developed by the Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes (CCBFC), some important changes were made to the new code. One was to reintroduce a simple prescriptive trade-off for the building envelope. The other was to revise the cost analysis of heat recovery ventilators in self-contained residential units.

The federal, provincial and territorial ministers of energy and mines officially announced the new code at their annual meeting in Kananaskis, Alberta on July 17.