Canada’s building sector must be able to meet demand in the right locations and at the right time to capitalize on the green retrofits opportunity, a new report from the Canada Green Building Council (CAGBC) states.
“Ensuring there are enough skilled workers to accommodate growing retrofit projects as well as an accessible and affordable supply — including the products, materials, and technologies needed to service the retrofit economy — will be critical,” said Ben Clark, director, Green Economy, Delphi Group.
The new report from the CAGBC and The Delphi Group predicts a nationwide green retrofit program will create up to 75,000 jobs annually across Canada.
Unveiled at the Building Lasting Change conference, the study states that retrofits that lower the carbon footprint of buildings have the potential to generate up to 2.1 million job years and help Canada meet its 2030 and 2050 climate targets.
“There is an opportunity for building owner-operators, design teams and governments to demonstrate leadership in normalizing the processes and technologies that will make zero-carbon buildings the go to industry standard for building excellence,” said Antoni Paleschi, senior energy performance specialist at WSP in Canada.
The report highlights a need to build expertise and knowledge across the retrofit spectrum, including among decision-makers, designers, financing experts and consultants.
More than 25 technologies and products that are directly relevant to low-carbon retrofits were identiied, including building automation systems, heat pumps, heat and energy recovery systems, wall recladding systems, thermal bridging technology and integrated photovoltaics.
“Canada already has many of the technologies needed to accelerate retrofits at scale,” said Ehren Cory, CEO of the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
“This study offers insights into where stakeholders need to collaborate and focus to remove barriers to retrofits and, in the process, modernize Canada’s built environment and meet its climate targets. It is essential reading for the new retrofit economy.”