Beyond 2020 Building
This blog is part four of the "2020 Green Building Movement Ontario” series.
Canada’s Building Solution to Climate Change.
Imagine if every new house in Canada was so efficient that it could produce power and heat itself. A cost-effective way to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and save money is to make Canada’s building sector more energy efficient. We can incorporate an environmental lens to how we build, design, and live in our cities. Sustainability practice will become the norm, not the exception to the rule.
Businesses and homes, the streets and sidewalks, parking lots and public transit that we use every day have been created to suit our climate changes. Canadian citizens can take individual action on climate change by making energy-efficient choices.
Impacts of climate change are affecting many aspects of daily life in Canada. Canada’s network of protected areas provides a natural solution for climate change by conserving biodiversity, protecting ecosystem services, capturing and storing carbon, connecting landscapes, building knowledge and understanding and inspiring people
Practical Solutions with Policy
Buildings contribute up to 22% of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in Ontario, with industry and transportation as the top two emitters. It is evident that action needs to be taken and spray foam can be a useful tool in driving the GHG emissions down in Ontario and nationally.
With programs such as Low Carbon Economy Fund and the Climate Action Incentive Fund the federal government incentivizes Canadians to participate in retrofit programs or build ‘green homes’. Whether you are part of the SME (small-and-medium-sized enterprise) or MUSH (municipalities, universities, schools, hospitals) Stream you may be eligible to participate in these rebate programs.
Phasing Out Fossil-fueled Electricity
Currently, about 25% of Canada’s electricity is generated by burning fossil fuels. Burning diesel to generate electricity releases many harmful, lung-damaging chemicals into the air. Diesel is a very reliable power source and can be stored in giant tanks to be used throughout the long winter months. Reducing our reliance on diesel and coal will improve our health, reduce climate change and save us money.
Ontario has phased out the use of coal for electricity generation, as such, it has one of the cleanest grids in the world. But as Clean Energy Canada has stated, energy efficiency includes more than a clean grid:
“...actually, the clean-energy sector is bigger and broader than that. It includes the people who make our homes waste less energy: insulators and HVAC operators.”
Energy Efficient Buildings
Many buildings in Canada are cold, drafty and based on old technologies making them highly inefficient. There is a long list of existing techniques and technologies on how to make existing buildings much more efficient. These techniques and technologies include spray-foam insulation, triple-paned windows, low-flow showerheads, high-efficiency furnaces, and on-demand water heaters.
A declaration on Clean Growth and Climate Change has been signed, committing to meeting or exceeding the federal government’s 2030 target of a 30% reduction below 2005 levels of greenhouse gas emissions.
The growth of Canada’s sustainable building industry and real estate sector will come through four key areas:
- Meet Canada’s Climate Change Targets by investing in and providing incentives for energy efficiency improvements in existing or old buildings to reach a high-performance standard with an immediate focus on recommissioning and retrofitting.
- Strengthen Building Performance by advancing building energy benchmarking, reporting and disclosure initiatives.
- Invest in Net Zero Buildings by supporting a National Net Zero Building Initiative to create Canadian standard to guide the industry in building net-zero neighborhoods and buildings.
- Reduce The Government’s GHG Emissions by adopting advanced high-performance green building measures for federal building renovations, leased properties and new construction, to meet LEED standards and, net-zero for new construction.
Ecostar as Part of Solution to Climate Change.
Ever since spray foam insulation has been a hot topic, Ecostar has specialized in it. In addition, because of this specialty, Ecostar has been a part of the solution to climate change since day one. Spray polyurethane foam insulation is an effective product solution that can reduce the carbon footprint of existing homes and increase the energy efficiency of buildings.
Ecostar uses eco-friendly materials that benefit your building and environment. Besides keeping you warm and adding the necessary comfort to your place, spray foam also helps mitigate climate change by reducing emissions.
- 50% up to 70% of the energy in your home is used because of heating and cooling
- 12% of your carbon footprint is because of electricity usage
- 15% of your carbon footprint is because of the use of gas, oil, and coal
If homes everywhere across the world were properly insulated with Ecostar products, after just 10 years we would see a reduction of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere totaling more than 293.5 billion pounds. The ‘eco’ in eco-friendly spray foam insulation usually stands because it is sprayed with water, not fluorocarbons that damage the ozone layer. Spray foam also satisfies three criteria that common construction materials doesn’t:
- Spray foam insulation is durable.
- Their manufacturing causes minimal emissions.
- Once they are out of use they don’t become waste.
We at EcoStar Insulation strive to provide the best quality products and the highest standard of expertise. Our team’s professionalism and experience goal is that you never have to worry about anything less than thorough and complete workmanship. Our team will guide you from the consultation to the execution stage. Contact us for your free estimate.