Making spaces work in Canada
With almost 10 million square metres of certified green building space, Canada is one of the world’s most mature green building markets.
Canada certified almost 35 million sqm of floor space in 2016 under the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, and the total number of LEED-certified projects now exceeds 2,900.
Canada is a lynchpin in the $1 trillion global green building market – and is a valuable contributor to jobs and economic growth throughout the nation.
The Canada Green Building Council’s Green Building in Canada report, published in 2016, found that sustainable building generates $23.6 billion in GDP and supports almost 298,000 direct jobs. What’s more, Canada’s portfolio of LEED buildings certified over the decade to 2015 will generate $63 billion in GDP over their lifetimes and create more than 700,000 jobs.
Promising to prioritise action on climate change during his election campaign, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has committed to an ambitious 2030 target to slash greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent below 2005 levels. The Canadian Government has also developed the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change, which outlines an approach to price carbon pollution and measures to increase technological innovations that support Canadian businesses in a global low-carbon economy.
Leadership at the city level is also taking shape. The City of Vancouver passed its Zero Emissions Building Plan in August 2016, which requires that all new construction emit zero operational carbon by 2030. The Passive House building standard is being used as a framework to fulfil the plan, and the number of Passive House Canadian buildings has accelerated rapidly.
Vancouver’s Deputy Mayor, Councillor Andrea Reimer, drove the award-winning Greenest City Action Plan, making Vancouver a global leader in environmental action.