Ontario Home Builders’ Association “ready to work” with provincial government on Climate Change Action Plan
As part of the $8-billion-plus climate plan, Ontario is introducing a mandatory home energy audit program
By Steve Payne
Press release from Ontario Home Builders’ Association in response to the Wynne government’s Climate Change Action Plan…
Toronto, June 8, 2016 – Today the provincial government released Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP). The action plan commits to lowering greenhouse gas emissions by 15 per cent by 2020, 37 per cent by 2030 and 80 per cent by 2050.
The CCAP has specific actions that impact new housing and land-use planning, including:
*Home Energy Rating and Disclosure (HERD): Energy audits would be required before a new or existing single-family home can be listed for sale, and the energy rating will be included in the real estate listing. These audits are intended to be provided free of charge under this plan.
*A rebate for high-performance: Rebates will go to individuals who purchase or build their own near net zero carbon emission homes, with energy efficiency performance that sufficiently exceeds the requirements of the Building Code.
*Funding for new technologies for homes: Assistance to homeowners to purchase and install low-carbon energy technologies such as geothermal heat pumps and air-source heat pumps, solar thermal and solar energy generation systems.
*Building Code Changes: Update the Building Code with long-term energy efficiency targets for new net zero carbon emission small buildings by 2030.
*Retrofitting existing private apartments: Incentives to install energy-efficient technologies, like boiler replacements, adaptive thermostats and lighting retrofits.
* Electric-Vehicle-Ready Homes: Require all new homes with garages to be constructed with a 50-amp, 240-volt receptacle.
“OHBA has been a long-time supporter of a home energy rating system for existing homes as well as a consumer rebate for newly-constructed homes that exceed the Ontario Building Code. We are encouraged that both these recommendations are included in Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan,” said Joe Vaccaro, CEO, Ontario Home Builders’ Association.
When the 2017 Building Code comes into effect in January 2017, houses constructed after that point will consume only 50 per cent of the energy they would have used in 2005. The Building Code primarily deals with new construction, which comprises only one per cent of the overall building stock on an annual basis, that’s why it is essential to improve the existing 4.8 million homes in Ontario.
Achieving a 2030 net zero Building Code will require extensive consultation with the industry and the necessary cost-benefit analysis for consumers.
“With over 30 per cent of Ontario’s new homes being Energy Star qualified, OHBA members are already leaders in building high-performance homes,” said Vaccaro. “We need to ensure that the upgrades we make to the 2030 Building Code are worth it to the consumer.”
The Ontario Home Builders’ Association is the voice of the building, land development and professional renovation industry in Ontario representing 4,000 member companies organized into 30 local associations across the province. Our members have built over 700,000 homes in the last 10 years in over 500 Ontario communities. The industry contributes over $45 billion to Ontario’s economy and employs over 325,000 people across the province.