August 20 - Moore takes green building message to mayors

August 21, 2009

Moore takes green building message to mayors

For a complete copy of Moore’s remarks, please click HERE.

Ontario’s mayors and councilors attending the annual conference of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) heard all about the many great things BILD and the industry itself is doing to promote sustainable development and green building but they also heard a very pointed message that municipalities should NOT be mandating green building schemes of their own or anyone else’s for that matter.

Speaking at the annual Conference of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario last week, BILD Chair Leith Moore cut right to the chase in exposing what he described as “an alarming trend” towards mandating green labeling systems rather than working through the Ontario Building Code. “Our biggest concern with municipal mandating revolves around fragmentation of the Ontario Building Code. The whole point of a uniform provincial Code is to ensure that developers, new home builders and professional renovators don’t have to operate in a fragmented regulatory environment where each municipality has different requirements,” Moore stated.

Moore reminded the audience that each generation of newly built homes has been much more energy efficient than the previous generation as the Building Code has continually evolved. “By 2011, every new home built in Ontario will have to meet an EnerGuide 80 standard which is a healthy stretch goal for builders but one which many are already meeting, if not exceeding. Meanwhile, the recently passed Green Energy Act contained amendments to the Ontario Building code under which energy and water conservation are now purposes of the Code, so you can expect to see further Code-driven leadership on the green front,” he said.

Moore’s point was that while the OBC is a minimum building standard, when it comes to energy efficiency, the minimum Code is hardly minimal. “The building code is the only standard that is legally binding. Labels are just that – they are not building standards, they are definitely not Codes, and while they are all generally well conceived, they have no place in any municipally-mandated regulatory scheme,” Moore asserted.

“The Code is developed through an open consultation process lead by government and that’s the key distinction between the Building Code and the various label programs which are not accountable to anyone but their own governing bodies,” Moore concluded.