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Canada’s Top Trends In Green Building

As rising temperatures hit the globe for the 2nd-warmest year on record, the public began taking notice of climate change’s effects more than ever. With a larger public eye on the issue, it doesn’t seem like the green building industry is taking a breather anytime soon.

As the industry moves forward, here are the top production trends other green construction firms and organization are concerning themselves with as they adapt to the market’s needs.

Zero Carbon Building Standard

Put forward in May by the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC), this document sets the guidelines for how a building’s health standards should be measured.

The program highlights include increasing focus on energy efficiency, what kinds of energy a building uses, and how well a building generates renewable energy. Their definition of a building which meets the standard is as follows:

“A zero carbon building is defined as one that is highly energy-efficient and produces onsite, or procures, carbon-free renewable energy in an amount sufficient to offset the annual carbon emissions associated with operations.”

The standard is meant to be used by those constructing commercial, institutional, and multi-family buildings. A pilot program involving 16 projects throughout Canada is underway, estimated to take two years to complete. The projects vary in building size and purpose, as well as involving old and new facilities.

LEED and WELL continue making strides

These certifications have moved past being just influential; they’re now the effective standard.

According to the most recent World Green Building Trends report, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards are being implemented on a massive global scale with megacities in developing countries.

The International WELL Building Institute’s WELL certifications, which measure how healthy a building is for the employees that work in it, have only risen in popularity and ubiquity, suggesting the industry’s future will not merely be focused on protecting the environment, but all of those who inhabit it.

According to the CaGBC’s website, their organization has certified over 2,800 LEED buildings and registered over 5,000, giving Canada’s biggest green building organization the second highest number of LEED projects anywhere in the world.

KIKO Water Systems

Winner of the CaGBC’s Green Building Product of the Year Award, KIKO impressed the industry with their Water Cartridge Systems. The company used nanotechnology instead of chemicals to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions in common products like boilers, chillers, and heat pumps. The company boasts of their ability to reduce HVAC energy consumption by 10 – 30 percent. 

KIKO’s water systems have improved performance in major buildings across Vancouver, like the Four Seasons and Westin Grand hotels, and offices within the Harbour Centre.

Retrofits and institutional construction

As detailed in the WGBT report, these two sectors are gaining traction across the world, with particularly strong expectations coming from Canada.

Roughly 46 percent of green construction firms in Canada, Mexico, and the US are expecting to see retrofit projects in the next three years, higher than the global average of 36 percent. Additionally, Canada is among a select few countries — including the US, Mexico, and some in the Middle East/North Africa — with over 40 percent of firms expecting to take on new institutional green building projects in upcoming years.  

“Smart” technology

Part of the LEED rating system incorporates to what degree a building or project self-manages and regulates. As the global industry standard becomes more common, so too do “smart” buildings, which allow incredibly controllable processes to HVAC, interior lighting, and energy systems.

This summer, Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) declared their plan to integrate smart technology in over 100 buildings over the next three years. Additionally, a MarketsandMarkets report detailed their expectations for the smart building market to grow from “an estimated USD 7.42 Billion in 2017 to USD 31.74 Billion by 2022.”

Smart technology isn’t slowing down, no matter what market you operate in.

Stay ahead of the curve

The Canadian green building industry and customer base are getting more educated, cautious and savvy. Implementing the right kinds of products in your commercial, industrial, or residential project is more crucial than ever.

With so many companies competing in the green building industry, it’s important to find the right people and products to stay ahead of the pack as the trends change. At Yellowblue Canada, we focus on getting out products that create a holistic healthy environment for homes and their residents. Technologies like the Better Air Priobiotic Air Purification System — which replenishes indoor air spaces — are the kinds of health-conscious machines that can put a building on the cutting edge of the industry.

Contact us to learn more about our whole-home solutions and make your next project your most advanced yet.

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