Vancouver is on the road to ensuring all new buildings contribute zero greenhouse gas emissions. A string of progressive policy actions are being put in place to require future generations of buildings to be the greenest yet.

 

The Challenge

Roughly 55% of city-wide emissions are from buildings, so making improvements to building design is a top priority. Ensuring new buildings go above and beyond internationally recognized standards demonstrates global climate leadership.

 

The Solution

Vancouver has developed the most stringent building codes in North America for a cold climate city, in an effort to cut emissions in half from newly constructed buildings under seven stories high. Energy efficiency standards were set higher than LEED Gold standards by focusing on greenhouse gas emissions rather than energy consumption. These ambitious codes and regulations are part of Vancouver's Green Buildings program, which set the city on the path to eliminate emissions in new buildings by 2030. Buildings are an important area of focus for the Canadian city if it is to achieve its goal of 80% carbon emission reductions by 2050. Thanks to a large-scale hydroelectric plant, the city's electricity supply is 93% renewable, so by focusing on building highly efficient new buildings, Vancouver can make big strides towards a zero-carbon future.

 

Environmental Benefits – Vancouver’s Green Buildings program seeks to reduce emissions from buildings by 20% by 2020 and further reduce emissions by at least 80% before 2050.

 

About Cities100

Presented by C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group (C40), Sustainia and Realdania – Cities100 2017 showcases leading solutions to urban climate challenges in five sectors: Energy, Waste, Adaptation, Mitigation and Transportation.

Available online and in print, Cities100 provides stakeholders an accessible format to explore achievable solutions for climate action in cities, and will be a useful tool for relevant groups ranging from impact investors and development organizations, to mayors and city governments. You can access the full Cities100 2017 publication online here.