Canada’s Zero Carbon Building Standard Celebrates First 10 Certifications

The Canada Green Building Council announced ten projects have certified under its Zero Carbon Building (ZCB) Standard. These projects include new and existing offices, schools and warehouses, each demonstrating that buildings of all types and age can achieve zero carbon emissions.

Joyce Centre for Partnership and Innovation

Introduced two years ago, the ZCB Standard was designed to guide the industry in building to zero and help Canada meet its international emissions targets by 2030.

Since its launch, CaGBC’s made-in-Canada standard has shifted the green building conversation to focus on carbon as its key performance metric. A carbon metric recognizes the true climatic impact of a building and brings to light aspects not considered by energy efficiency, including the importance of selecting low-carbon construction materials and energy sources for building operations.

According to CaGBC, the market response has been encouraging, with over 20 projects (including 10 certifications) now registered under the ZCB Standard.

The CaGBC also states that one of the first Zero Carbon pilot projects, The Joyce Centre for Partnership and Innovation at Mohawk College is the first building to achieve both ZCB Design and Performance certifications.

Design certification assures a project has been designed according to zero carbon building requirements while Performance certification demonstrates the project has achieved zero carbon emissions over one year of operation as required by annual verification.

The Joyce Centre design reflects a strong focus on zero-carbon, with a high-performance building envelope that minimizes heating and cooling demand, an all-electric geoexchange system, and a striking rooftop photovoltaic (PV) system.

“Zero carbon buildings, like The Joyce Centre at Mohawk College, represent a great opportunity for cost-effective emissions reduction. These projects spur innovation in design, building materials and technology while creating new skills and expertise for tradespeople and professionals,” said Thomas Mueller, President and CEO, CaGBC and CEO, GBCI Canada. “Owners are also recognizing the benefits a zero-carbon building can bring, including increased resiliency to extreme weather events, meeting occupant expectations for comfort and corporate leadership, and future-proofing against rising carbon costs.”

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