Alert Notice #123
Green Building & Energy Efficiency

Latest Industry News, Events, Issues, Products, And Resources
December 15, 2015


1. Industry Issues, Forecasts & Trends
2. Business Management
3. Building Design & Trends
4. Codes Standards & Regulations
5. Building Science & Technology
6. Building Performance Issues
7. Products & Suppliers
8. Installation & Procedures
9. Fuels, Energy & Transportation
10. Information Sources
11. Conferences & Shows
12. Education & Training
13. Costs & Savings
14. Incentives, Financing & Programs

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HPSC BC Home Performance Stakeholder Council
BuiltGreen   Built Green
BPC   Building Performance Centre
many-roads   Many Roads Evolve

Here is another special BC Building Info issue on green building and energy efficieny.

The regular BC Building Info newsletter covering all industry topics will come your way in a few weeks as usual. Hope you find at least a wee bit of value here somewhere.

Have a “Top Drawer” day.

Ken Farrish

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                                     New BC Home Performance Stakeholder Council
   A group of industry players are working to advance home performance in BC. They have formed a
   Stakeholder Council to share ideas & resources, and to invite input from residential energy retrofit
   contractors, trades, suppliers, manufacturers, associations, and industry experts. You can...
  • Stay connected by adding your name to their mailing list to receive regular news or updates
  • Provide your thoughts & ideas on issues that you see as important for industry development
  • Get involved by attending future meetings or events to network with other industry players
  • Actively participate as a member of an Industry Sector Council
                                                                   Find out more…

Ken's Top Pick

BC Code Energy Provisions In Section 9.36
Building Officials Association of BC online slide show presentations on BC Code energy provisions in Section 9.36 cover introduction, building envelope, airtightness, HVAC & service water heating, compliance options, ventilation, and resources.

1. Industry Issues, Forecasts & Trends

New Study Suggests Strong Outlook For Green Homes
US National Association of Home Builders says during the prolonged housing downturn, green homes provided support to the ailing residential market and now promise to be an important element of the recovering market as well, according to a new study conducted by Dodge Data & Analytics.

Demand For Green Building Doubles Every Three Years
Green Building Elements says according to a recent report, green building continues to double every three years, with strongest acceleration in emerging economies, and clients and tenants worldwide are increasingly demanding sustainability for both energy efficiency and occupant benefit.

Green Certified Buildings Outperform Non-Green Buildings
REMI Network says an international research team concluded that there is strong evidence that buildings with sustainable certification outperform similar non-green buildings in terms of rental rates, occupancy levels, tenant satisfaction scores, and the probability of lease renewals.

Technology & Policy Options For Low-Emission Energy System In Canada
Council of Canadian Academies report Technology and Policy Options for a Low-Emission Energy System in Canada, provides a review of options for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and moving Canada toward a low-emission future.

Energy Use Down, Even Where Economy Is Up
Energy Efficiency Markets says energy consumption has dropped to levels not seen since the 1980s in the 29 IEA countries, which include the United States. At the same time, per capita income has never been higher, according to International Energy Agency 2015 Energy Efficiency Market Report.

Office Properties Set High Green Standards
Canadian Property Management says every year tens of millions of square feet of corporate real estate are renovated, with about 80 per cent of waste, including furniture, equipment, IT, office supplies and some building materials ending up in the landfill. Socially responsible options are now available to property managers that will help them serve communities and benefit their sustainability reporting, which in turn will help engage both stakeholders and tenants.

Climate Models Over-Predict Precipitation Increase
Environmental News Network says Lawrence Livermore researchers and collaborators have found that most climate models overestimate the increase in global precipitation due to climate change.

There Is An Elephant At The Door Selling Carbon Pollution
CMD Group says Saudi Arabia is the elephant in the environment’s living room that has pulled off the amazing magic trick of invisibility.

2. Business Management

Avoiding Liability In Green Building
Kuhn LLP says greater demand from consumers and regulators for green building practices suggests potential benefits for green-contractors. A common strategy is to adopt a labelling system that advertises compliance with defined environmental standards. Along with the marketing benefits, however, comes potential exposure to liability. (PDF)

Promote Comfort And Energy Efficiency Will Follow
Healthy Heating shows contractors how to promote comfort and then energy efficiency will follow.

Making Home Energy Upgrades Accessible, Convenient, Affordable
Rocky Mountain Institute initiative Residential Energy+ will unlock pent up demand for residential energy performance improvements nationwide by addressing how home energy upgrades are financed and delivered.

Winning Messaging For Energy Efficiency
Resource Media online report Making the Case: Winning Messaging for Energy Efficiency draws on recent focus groups, polls, and other research to chart a path promoting energy efficiency through language and imagery in ways that tap public enthusiasm. (PDF)

My Attempt To Make Energy Efficient Home Improvements
This is the story of what happens when one woman, who knows enough about energy efficiency and home performance to be dangerous, puts herself in the shoes of an average consumer and signs up for the standard energy-efficient retrofit process.

What You're Missing In The Furnace Call
Mike Rogers says to capture the full home performance sales opportunity, you have to stop limiting yourself to the widget the customer asked for in the initial call and look for the underlying needs of both the customer and the home.

Two Important Lessons For Selling HVAC & Home Performance
IE3 says the bad news is that many of us still have the wrong idea of what the house heating system is, and we haven’t moved past the box and ductwork to dissect the living, breathing context of the entire home structure.

Global Warming Term Leaves Many Americans Cold
MIT news says the term global warming leaves many Americans cold, and climate strategy focused on local impacts is most effective with Americans.

3. Building Design & Trends

10 Megatrends Shaping The Future Of Green Building
Building Design & Construction identifies 10 megatrends that will shape green building technologies, markets, government rules, and certification systems through 2020 and beyond.

Global Alliance For Buildings & Construction Launched
Architect magazine says the Global Alliance For Buildings & Construction was launched at the UN Climate Change Conference with more than 60 organizations and 18 countries pledging to limit carbon emissions from the built environment.

KB Home Counting On Graywater Conservation Tech
TecHome Builder says buyers at KB Home's new Sea Cliff development in San Diego will have graywater technology included in the price point of their new homes.

Gains In Efficiency Wiped Out By Increases In House Size
Mother Nature Network says houses are better insulated with better windows and more efficient appliances so energy used per square foot has dropped by a third. But because they are so much bigger, they use up just about the same amount of energy.

Free Software For Buildings & Energy Analysis
Natural Resources Canada offers a number of different free software programs for simulating building performance and renewable energy systems.

Utilities Should Stop Driving With The Brakes On
Green Building Advisor says any utility or utility regulator intending to encourage better energy performance in buildings should assure owners can obtain whole-building usage information. This will allow programs and incentives that push toward better energy performance to work as they should.

Solar-Powered Sustainer Homes Give Freedom To Live Anywhere
Inhabitat says Netherlands-based Sustainer Homes has unveiled a solar-powered shipping container house prototype that's not only portable, but also fully furnished and off-grid capable.

4. Codes Standards & Regulations

BC Climate Leadership Team Report Released
BC government has released the Climate Leadership Team Report and the province will begin public consultations in January 2016.

BC Groups Pushing For Green Building Standards
Journal Of Commerce says as Premier Christy Clark prepares to attend the United Nations climate-change conference in Paris, the BC government is also gearing up to release its draft Climate Leadership Plan.

2015 Canadian National Building Code Preview
Home Builder Canada magazine says the 2015 National Building Code of Canada will be published this December. It summarizes some of the significant changes affecting Housing and Small Buildings in the new NBC, the reasons for these changes, and their anticipated outcomes.

Public Review Of CSA Standard Limiting VOC Emissions From Residential Composite Wood Products
CSA new Standard Limiting Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) Emissions (formaldehyde) from Composite Wood Products for Residential Building Materials is now available for public review.

Energy Star For New Canadian Homes
Natural Resources Canada provides information and resources for the building industry on ENERGY STAR for New Homes.

Moving Forward With Energy Benchmarking Policies In Canada
Natural Resources Canada says the importance of energy benchmarking and the development of policies that promote this energy-saving strategy was a key topic at the 2015 Canada Green Building Council conference held in June.

Ontario Prepares For Private Sector Energy Reporting
REMI Network says the Ontario private sector is readying for energy reporting and building industry advocates endorse benchmarking, but question compulsory disclosure.

25 Years Of Energy Code Should Have Made More Of A Difference
Florida Solar Energy Center research paper Why Doesn't 25 Years of an Evolving Energy Code Make More of a Difference? describes the impacts of the Florida new home building energy code. It presents reasons why the measured savings are far less than predicted by simulations of homes built to the two codes. (PDF)

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5. Building Science & Technology

Modeling Enclosure Design In Above Grade Walls
Building Science report Modeling Enclosure Design In Above Grade Walls describes modeling of typical wall assemblies that have performed well historically in various climate zones.

Low-Load HVAC Systems For Single & Multifamily Applications
US Department of Energy online video presentations discusses low-load HVAC systems for single and multifamily applications.

Confusing Insulation With Air Barriers
Energy Vanguard says just because a failure in the air control layer (air barrier) shows up in the heat control layer (insulation) doesn't mean it's the fault of the insulation.

What To Do With All That Recessed Lighting
Green Building Advisor weighs options for stemming the heat loss from recessed can lights.

Accidental Dehumidification Is A Preventable Mess
Energy Vanguard blog post says if you have windows that start collecting water you're a victim of accidental dehumidification.

Organizational Use Of Energy Management & Information Systems
US Department of Energy report Primer on Organizational Use of Energy Management and Information Systems provides a common reference that can be used to understand key distinguishing factors and core attributes of different solutions within the family of EMIS technologies. (PDF)

10 Uncommon Tips For Winterizing A Home
Energy Vanguard blog post describes what you should really do to prepare a home for an efficient and cozy winter.

Using Solar Hot Water to Address Piping Heat Losses In Multifamily Buildings
US Department of Energy report Using Solar Hot Water to Address Piping Heat Losses in Multifamily Buildings describes effectiveness of using automatic valves to divert water (which is normally returned through the recirculation piping to the gas or electric water heater) to the solar storage tank when the returning water is cooler than the water in the solar storage tank. (PDF)

6. Building Performance Issues

Insulation Is Critical To Radiant System Performance
Radiant and Hydronics magazine article describes why insulation is critical ro radiant floor heating system performance.

7 Habits Of Highly Effective Indoor Air Quality
Indoor Environment & Energy Efficiency describes seven habits of highly effective indoor air quality, which are the result of 15 years of seeking answers as to why clients were getting sick in their very own homes. They learned from detailed interviews with hundreds of families on what symptoms the human body experiences when something inside the home begins to poison them.

CompAIR Volatile Ingredients Calculator
Pharos Project online CompAIR volatile ingredients calculator helps users identify building products that release less chemicals into the air.

Super Insulated Walls & Moisture
Building Science online slide show presentation discusses super insulated walls and moisture. It covers what are the risks associated with high-R or superinsulated walls, relative to conventional/code construction, what are some of the options for constructing high-R walls in cold climates, how does a vapor-open high-R wall behave in a very cold climate in terms of moisture risks, and what moisture conditions and resulting damage are seen at double stud wall sheathing after experiencing high interior humidity conditions. (PDF)

Electromagnetic Fields
Home Builder Canada magazine describes some issues and considerations for electromagnetic fields in homes.

Understanding CAZ Depressurization Testing
Indoor Environment & Energy Efficiency describes CAZ (combustion appliance zone) depressurization testing purpose and procedures.

New Rating System Weighs Comfort Of Sustainable Features
EcoBuilding Pulse Magazine describes a proposed rating system that would measure and compare a home's overall ability to deliver comfort to its occupants.

Need For Water Efficiency In Multifamily
Multi Housing News says developers of multi-housing developments in the US are becoming increasingly aware of the need for these developments to use water much more efficiently.

7. Products & Suppliers

Eight Products That Green A Home From Inside Out
Builder magazine describes some products from Greenbuild 2015 that do their jobs behind the walls.

Top 10 Green Products For 2016
Building Green describes their picks for the Top 10 Green Building Products of 2016.

Cradle To Cradle Announces 2015 Innovator Awards
EcoBuilding Pulse Magazine describes Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute 2015 Innovator Award winners that are designing for upcycling and making products with ingredients that are manufactured in ways that respect the environment.

9 Green Product Databases For Selecting Sustainable Materials
EcoBuilding Pulse Magazine describes nine guides where you can find up-to-date information on the sustainability of building products and materials.

Online Energy Star Product Finder
Energy Star provides online search for Energy Star product models and allows you to compare features, savings and more.

Database Of Healthy, Sustainable Products
Quartz is an online database providing information about the health and environmental effects of some commonly used building products.

Most Efficient Energy Star Products
Energy Star new Most Efficient designation recognizes the most efficient products among those that qualify for the Energy Star.

GreenScreen For Safer Chemicals Promotes Less Toxic Building Materials
Green Building Elements article says the GreenScreen for Safer Chemicals tool can be used in the LEED green building certification program to clarify the role green materials can play in sustainable building projects.

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8. Installation & Procedures

Installing Batt Insulation For Existing Attics
Building America Solution Center describes how to increase insulation in existing homes by installing batt insulation on the ceiling plane of the attic.

Installing Blown Insulation For Existing Attic
Building America Solution Center describes how to insulate an attic in an existing home using blown insulation added to the attic floor.

Rigid Foam Insulation For Existing Exterior Walls
Building America Solution Center describes issues and considerations for installing rigid foam insulation on existing exterior walls.

Installing Rigid Foam Insulation Between Existing House & Garage Walls
Building America Solution Center describes issues and considerations for installing rigid foam insulation between existing house and garage walls.

Comparison Of Lighting Types
BC Hydro online chart compares the features and costs of different lighting options including incandescent, LED, CFL, and halogen. (PDF)

Hydronic Retrofit Of Forced Air System
Plumbing & Hydronic Contractor News describes how a contractor approached retrofitting a forced air system with hydronics-based heating along with an upgraded AC system.

2 Decades Of Home Energy Data
Energy Vanguard describes how Danny Orlando has been steadily improving the energy efficiency of his home over the past couple of decades and monitoring his energy use data.

Planning Small Wind Electric System
US Department of Energy says small wind electric systems require planning to determine if there is enough wind in your area on a consistent basis, if the location for the system is appropriate for the needs of the system, if zoning codes or covenants allow wind systems in your area, and if the system will be economical with all of these elements taken into consideration.

9. Fuels, Energy & Transportation

Updated Look At Future Of Energy
Business Council of BC says given the vast size of the global energy system, the huge amounts of capital invested in it, and the difficulties of making changes to complex integrated systems, it would be wise to pay more attention to climate adaptation.

Canadian Transition Energy Initiative
Canadian Transition Energy Initiative aims to bring together and build consensus between diverse groups of people to develop a transition road map for Canadian energy.

Age Of Renewable Power, New Guide To Future Of Energy
International Renewable Energy Agency report The Age of Renewable Power, New Guide to the Future of Energy identifies 20 measures that can be taken to support national roadmaps to integrate variable renewables. It also highlights lessons learned by countries already pursuing a power system transformation. (PDF)

Business Guide To Green Power
GreenBiz describes 12 ways to invest in renewable energy.

Top 5 Developments Enabling Shift To 100 Percent Renewable Energy
Renewable Energy World says a report shows these five developments are supporting the trend toward higher penetrations of renewable energy: resilient grid; rise in net zero buildings and smart connected devices; Energy storage availability and affordability; Proliferation of utility-scale renewables; Cost-effective status of distributed solar across geographies.

Largest Solar Farm In Western Canada
Green Energy Futures article & video describes how a Hutterite colony invests in solar to run recycling and farm operations.

BC Joins Alliance For Zero-Emission Vehicles
British Columbia announces it has become the 14th jurisdiction to sign on to the International Zero-Emission Vehicle Alliance.

2016 Fuel Economy Guide For Vehicles
US Department of Energy online 2016 Fuel Economy Guide helps car buyers choose vehicles that are the most fuel-efficient and emit the lowest amount of greenhouse gases.

10. Information Sources

BC Green Buildings Map & Jobs
Pembina Institute online BC Green Buildings Map identifies locations of energy efficient homes and buildings, and quantifies the number of green building jobs in the province.

BC Community Renewable Energy Guides
Community Energy Association provides guides on renewable energy for communities.

Q3 Newsletter With Built Green Canada Updates
Built Green Canada online Q3 Newsletter provides updates on the Built Green Canada program and industry happenings. (PDF)

2015 Year End Update On Canadian Net Zero Energy Housing Council
CHBA provides a 2015 year end update of their Net Zero Energy Housing Council, along with plans for 2016 and beyond. (PDF)

Local Energy Efficiency Partnerships For Canadian Builders
NRCan provides the Local Energy Efficiency Partnerships (LEEP) service to builders to help them reduce their time and risk in finding and trying innovations that can help them build higher performance homes better, faster and more affordably.

Canadian Magazine On Green Concepts For Businesses
Green Business Canada magazine helps Canadians share ideas and initiatives promoting green concepts and environmentally friendly business objectives.

Information & Resources On Green Building Science
Green Builder Media building science website provides research, ebooks, videos and information on foundations, structure, insulation, electrical and more.

Wind for Homeowners, Farmers, Businesses
US Department of Energy provides information and resources on wind power for homeowners, farmers, and businesses.

11. Conferences & Shows

Net Positive Energy + Water Conference
International Living Future Institute presents The Net Positive Energy + Water Conference in San Diego February 18-19. It will address the latest in zero energy and water ideas, technologies and applications, presented by a select group of leading-edge experts from around the world.

Living Future 2016
Living Future 2016 will be held in Seattle, May 11-13. It attracts decision makers from some of the world's most respected architecture, engineering and contracting firms in continuing to raise the caliber of success for a human experience that is in harmony with the natural world.

2016 BC Bettering Environmental Stewardship & Technology Conference
BC Environmental Industries Association annual Bettering Environmental Stewardship & Technology Conference will be held May 25-27, in Whistler. It includes programming with technical sessions and panel discussions.

12. Education & Training

Webinar On Solutions For Combustion Safety In Existing Homes
US Department of Energy free webinar Solutions for Combustion Safety in Existing Homes will be presented on December 16th. It is for those working in a home with natural-draft combustion appliances who don't want to kill their clients.

Apres Paris: A COP21 Debrief In BC
Carbon Talks presents Après Paris: A COP21 debrief workshop and webinar in Vancouver on December 17th.

Hazard Recognition & Control
Independent Contractors and Businesses Association (ICBA) course Hazard Recognition and Control will be offered in Burnaby on January 15th. It is designed to provide participants the required knowledge to understand the principle of hazard recognition and control as well as the methods used to ensure hazards are identified and adequately addressed in the workplace.

Webinars On Climate Adaption In Canada
Cullbridge Marketing & Communications hosts and archives Webinars on various topics relating to Canada's climate change adaption.

BCIT Online Education For Sustainable Community Energy Management
Community Energy Association (CEA) is partnering with the BC Institute of Technology in 2016 to deliver the six online courses that qualify students to write CEA’s Community Energy Management certification exam.

Solar Training On The Rise In Edmonton
Green Energy Futures says Randall Benson, a master electrician who’s been installing solar systems since 2001, designs and installs solar PV systems, is now offering solar PV training out of Edmonton.

Presentations From 2015 ACI Mid-Atlantic Regional Home Performance Conference
Home Performance Coalition ACI Live Learning Center provides access to presentations from the 2015 ACI Mid-Atlantic Regional Home Performance Conference.

Online Courses On Marketing Home Performance
Energy Circle Academy is an easy-to-use online platform for your continuing education in home performance marketing.

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  - a key concern of _ n _ _ _ _ _ n _ _ _ _ _ _ n _ _ relationship

the answer...        

13. Costs & Savings

Electricity Demand & Duck Curve
Energy Vanguard says that solar power is reducing the electricity demand during the sunny part of the day, the morning demand ramp is flattening out, and now the evening ramp is getting steeper.

Energy Savings From Window Attachments
US Department of Energy online webinar slide show discusses how window attachments and coverings, such as storm windows and cellular shades, can be a cost-effective means of reducing energy use in residential buildings. (PDF)

Consumer Blog On Home Performance & Benefits
Building Performance Institute blog educates homeowners about the health, safety and energy saving effects of home performance upgrades.

Energy Savings Calculated At Meter
Open Energy Efficiency Meter creates a standard weights and measures for energy efficiency that is reliable for both markets and grid operators. In simple terms, this means that using the meter, private companies, utilities, and regulators will all calculate the same level of savings for a given set of building efficiency projects.

Smart Investments In Energy Efficiency
Institute for Market Transformation case study examines recent energy improvements to The Portrait Building in Washington, DC. Three efficiency measures, completed for a total of $169,946 (or $1.27 per square foot) will pay back in a little over two years and, over an assumed 10-year useful life, offer a cumulative net present value of $578,248 and a 49 percent internal rate of return.

Factors Driving Wind & Solar Toward Grid Parity
Utility Dive article says a new analysis from Deloitte shows when, where, and why renewables can be cost-competitive.

14. Incentives, Financing & Programs

Green Bonds In Canada
Sustainable Prosperity and the Climate Bonds Initiative has released the fourth annual Green Bonds Canada Report. It tracks highlights from the current year, emerging trends, and opportunities ahead for green bonds in Canada.

Measuring At The Meter
Energy Efficiency Markets explains how California's shifting rules for measuring at the meter open the way for remake energy efficiency and pay-for-performance programs.

Valuing Energy Efficiency In Electricity Market
Energy Vanguard says the goal for energy efficiency is to be able to participate in emerging markets for power. There is a lot more money when efficiency is considered alongside solar power and new nuclear power plants than there is in ratepayer rebate programs.

PACE Loans Interfere With Home Sales
Green Building Elements says the conflict between mortgage lenders and PACE lenders must be resolved before the full power of the PACE program can be realized.

Social Media Toolkit For Energy Efficiency Programs
US Department of Energy's Better Buildings Residential Network has developed a Social Media Toolkit to help residential energy efficiency programs assess and determine the best social media platforms for their programs to engage potential home energy upgrade customers by building brand awareness.

Residential Energy+ Mapping Future Of Home Energy Upgrades
Rocky Mountain Institute summarizes input from 50 US market actors and industry experts on a vision and action plan for market-based solutions to accelerate and scale homeowner investments in energy upgrades in existing single-family homes across the United States.

New Way To Replicate Green Banks Worldwide
Energy Efficiency Markets says private investors often shy away from new green energy technology until it scales. But it can't scale without financing. Out of this dilemma came a handful of green banks. And now the world may soon see many more if a new Green Bank Network succeeds.

Dittie For Today: On Optimism

When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same: If you look at the science about what is happening on earth and aren't pessimistic, you don't understand data. But if you meet the people who are working to restore this earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren't optimistic, you haven't got a pulse. What I see everywhere in the world are ordinary people willing to confront despair, power and incalculable odds in order to restore some semblance of grace, justice and beauty to this world. - Paul Hawken

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ISSN: 1703-5597 - National Library of Canada


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