Volume 42, Issue 8 - August 2007

Codes & Regulations        

Canada to Update Model 
National Energy Code for Commercial Buildings

Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and the National Research Council Canada (NRC) have joined to update the Model National Energy Code for Buildings. 

According to Margaret Webb, executive director of the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) there is a catch to revising the codes. “The salient issue in addition to the news of updating the energy code is that it will only apply to commercial products, not residential,” she says. 

“What this means is that it is basically a ‘free-for-all’ on the residential side depending on requirements set by the individual provinces and sometimes down to the municipal level,” Webb adds. “Also, there is no liaison between this code development and the Canadian Energy Star® program. This kind of activity can lead to market confusion and really drive costs up.” 

Published in 1997, the Model Energy Code for Buildings was not adopted by the Canadian provinces or territories and as a result, the codes were not updated. Gary Lunn, minister of NRCan and Pierre Coulombe, president of NRC, together announced in June that they will create a standing committee to update Canada’s ecoENERGY initiatives. The committee will consist of business, government and construction industry and representatives.

“Updating the Model National Energy Code will help all provinces and territories reduce energy use, increase energy efficiency and reduce harmful emissions,” says Lunn.

According to Sylvie Dostaler, NRC communications officer, the NRC plans to form a committee to study the energy revisions. It is likely to take a few years before the updates are complete. 

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