CaGBC Provides 2020 Pre-Budget Submission to the Federal Government

Recommendations focus on retrofits, workforce development and zero-carbon buildings.

The Canada Green Building Council today submitted its recommendations to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance in advance of the 2020 Federal Budget. This year’s topic for submissions is Climate Emergency: The Required Transition  to a Low Carbon Economy.

As the voice of the green building industry in Canada, the CaGBC is pleased to provide its submission and recommendations to the Committee. Our in-depth market research and analysis, building certification programs, and capacity-building efforts have already helped to accelerate the transformation to high-performing low-carbon buildings, homes, and communities throughout Canada.

High-performing, smart, and innovative buildings are critical to Canada’s transformation to a low-carbon economy—and have the potential to create jobs, spur economic growth, and deliver cost savings for Canadians. Canada’s green building sector is one of the most advanced in the world and is well-positioned to drive the transformation to a low-carbon economy.

As 17 per cent of Canada’s Green House Gas (GHG) emissions come from buildings, it’s critical that Canada focus both on the construction of high-performing, low-emission buildings and retrofit existing ones. Already, reports from the Expert Panel on Sustainable Finance and Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Advisory Council on Climate Action (ACCA) have indicated that the CaGBC’s message around low carbon and retrofits is making an impact at the highest levels.

In Budget 2020, Canada could pave the way toward implementing green building initiatives that could transform the country. Our solutions are technically feasible, financially viable, and provide clear socio-economic benefits; including creating capacity and new jobs in Canada’s construction workforce.

Our recommendations to the Committee are:

  • The government should invest $20 million over two years for workforce development and training to build more low-carbon green buildings.
  • The government should allocate $1 billion in funding from the Canada Infrastructure Bank for deep retrofits of public and private sector buildings, which will help to grow investor confidence in Canada’s retrofit economy.
  • The government should commit to adopting the CaGBC’s Zero-Carbon Building Standard, along with an updated LEED Platinum standard, to help the government reduce energy use and encourage the commercial and institutional market to move toward zero-carbon building.

Our recommendations demonstrate CaGBC’s focus on leveraging the green building industry to help drive the transition to a low-carbon economy. Further, our research shows how doing so can also contribute to Canada’s economic growth and mitigate the effects of climate change—a concern for all Canadians.

Read the CaGBC’s full recommendations to the Committee here.