Canadian Consulting Engineer

Ontario heads towards requiring energy ratings for residential buildings

In Ontario, a proposal has passed its second reading in the legislature that would make it mandatory to have energy...

October 29, 2008   Canadian Consulting Engineer

In Ontario, a proposal has passed its second reading in the legislature that would make it mandatory to have energy ratings posted for small residential buildings.
The Home Energy Rating Act was a private member’s bill introduced by MPP Phil McNeely, member for Ottawa-Orleans. It passed second reading on October 16 and has been referred to the legislature’s Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs.
The proposed law would require that whenever anyone wants to sell or lease a detached, semi-detached or low rise multi-unit residential building, they must provide a home energy rating report. (Presumably that will require an energy audit be done by a professional, which could mean work for engineering consultants.)
Among the environmental and industry groups supporting Bill 101 was the EnviroCentre at the City of Ottawa and the Conservation Bureau of the Ontario Power Authority.
Another supporter, Ken Elsey, President and CEO of the Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance called it “The most significant piece of legislation in years. Not only will this serve to inform consumers about the true cost of home ownership – but it will also serve as an economic and employment stimulus as home sellers will want to upgrade the energy efficiency of their homes before putting them on the market. In the end we all win.”
Chuck Wilson, director of REEEP North America, suggested that the legislation should be adopted by other provinces and jurisdictions.
As reported by eh HRAI Institute, a poll by the TD Bank Financial Group recently found that 91% of Canadians agree with changes being brought into building codes to make new buildings more environmentally friendly. Also 82% agreed with building code changes for renovations. However, 68% of Canadians disagreed with having a carbon tax for “non-green” homes.


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