Announcing the Canadian Green Retrofit Economy Study

Help us build back better

The Delphi Group and the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) are proud to announce the launch of the Canadian Green Retrofit Economy Study, made possible with support from the Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB), the Ontario Construction Secretariat, Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The study will identify how Canada can scale up retrofits for large buildings, including industrial, commercial, and large residential buildings. The study will focus on two essential components:

  • Building workforce capacity to ensure the right number of workers with the right skills in the right locations at the right time are available to support retrofit projects; and,
  • Building supply chain capacity to deliver affordable low-carbon construction-related products, technologies, and materials.

Securing workforce and supply chain capacity will ensure that the unprecedented level of investment in aggressive retrofit programs – including the CIB’s $2 billion financing initiative for energy-efficient building retrofits – delivers transformational outcomes.

How we build a better future

Getting large-building retrofits right is a critical step on Canada’s road to net zero. Buildings and construction contribute nearly 40 per cent of energy-related greenhouse gas emissions, and Canada’s buildings require significant heating and cooling.

This work will expand on the research in the recent CaGBC report, “Canada’s Green Building Engine: Market Impact and Opportunities in a Critical Decade,” for which The Delphi Group was the research partner. The 2020 reportoutlines that targeted intervention and investments from government and industry will help Canada can meet its 2030 GHG emission reduction targets, as well as:

  • Generate significant economic income ($150 billion in GDP) over a ‘business as usual’ approach;
  • Create new, highly skilled jobs in the process (equal to 1.47 million jobs in the green building sector by 2030); and,
  • Make communities more resilient over the long term.

To fully realize the environmental, economic, and social benefits of investing in large-building retrofits, Canada’s green building sector must be able to meet the supply demand at the right time and in the right locations. However, there are challenges ahead.

Project leads need to manage supply chain gaps and implement new materials and technologies, while Canada’s construction workforce is expected to shrink over the next ten years. Shifting to energy-efficient low-carbon buildings will depend on a workforce transition involving property managers, designers, building science professionals, building officials, real estate professionals, regulators, financiers/lenders, insurance providers, and others across the entire value chain. The Canadian Green Retrofit Economy Study will provide a clear understanding of the supply side of the equation.

Quotes

"CMHC is proud to support the Canadian Green Retrofit Economy study. The new knowledge will help inform the development of proactive policies and programs to develop the professionals, trades and supply chains needed to renew our building stock and meet our sector's climate change objectives.” —  Lois McGrath, Director, Research, CMHC.

“To meet Canada's net-zero emissions ambition, municipalities and their partners are working together to accelerate and retrofit buildings at an unprecedented pace, scale and depth. We are pleased to participate in the Canadian Green Retrofit Economy Study because it will help answer crucial questions about how we can work together to create green jobs, low carbon supply chains and broader community benefits.” —  Chris Boivin, Chief Development Officer, Federation of Canadian Municipalities & Managing Director, Green Municipal Fund

“The Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) is allocating $2 billion for energy efficient building retrofits – commercial, industrial, public sector. The opportunity to reduce greenhouse gases is significant. This research is a great partnership with leading organizations and an important way to further inform the scale-up and execution of retrofits in Canada.” — Andrew Posluns, Senior Director, Corporate Planning, Policy and Research, Canada Infrastructure Bank

Delphi and CaGBC are collaborating to conduct this game-changing research. Together they will profile key pathways to address workforce and supply chain needs and inform a larger green-building industrial strategy.

Are you interested in contributing your insights and experience to this study? For more information and to get in touch with the project team, reach out to Ben Clark.