Energy Efficiency

Shutterstock

Gas vs. Electricity: The True Cost Of Home Heating In B.C.

It's not always easy to separate the energy used to heat your home from that used to power lights and appliances, heat water, and charge electronics. For example, there are two different electricity rates (or tiers) charged by your utility. After consuming a certain amount of energy each month, you start being charged at a higher rate. Both B.C. Hydro and FortisBC also charge a fixed amount on each bill, in addition to charging for the energy you consume. You can see how it might be difficult to understand the costs and benefits of different heating options.
Alex_533 via Getty Images

Vancouver's Green Buildings Policy Is Good News

By setting the bar so that new homes and buildings perform better and pollute less -- at no additional cost -- we are taking an important step toward reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, and bringing construction standards in line with those being adopted across Europe and North America. The city's new policy will save us money, expand the number of jobs in green construction, and benefit our health. It's an exciting blueprint for what will become the new normal in construction in B.C. and across Canada.
David Dodge, GreenEnergyFutures.ca

Can This Radically Sustainable Home Survive A Cold, Canadian Winter?

An earthship is an off-grid home that produces its own energy, captures its own water, treats its own wastewater, grows its own food and passively collects the sun's energy for heat. That's the idea, anyways. But ever since the Kinney Earthship was built in the summer of 2014, Duncan Kinney has received many emails about one particular subject: how does it hold up so far north?
IvelinRadkov via Getty Images

Inaction Scores Harper a Failing Grade on Climate Change

For more than two decades, Mark Jaccard has been penning "report cards" about Canada's environmental track record. The results haven't been pretty. His annual evaluations were harnessed in the mid-2000s by Stephen Harper as arguments for why the Conservatives deserved a shot at governing the country. Jaccard's latest report card, released on October 6, concludes the Conservative Party has since "implemented virtually no policies that would materially reduce emissions" despite making significant emissions pledges for 2020 and 2050. Jaccard concludes the absence of such actions shows "they must have had no intention" of dealing with climate change.
Getty

Echohaven: An Environmentally Friendly, Energy Efficient Suburb

To borrow a popular internet meme, what if I told you we could build suburbs that preserved the natural landscape, had super energy efficient homes, built a sense of community and had no vinyl siding. Well we can, and the neighborhood of Echohaven, in the northwest community of Rocky Ridge in Calgary is doing precisely that. The homes of Echohaven must be super energy efficient, collect rainwater and are located in an oasis of nature. Echohaven has turned the modern process of building a neighbourhood on its ear
Alamy

Why Your Company Should Buy Carbon Offsets

Most of us want to do something good for the environment. An easy way is to spend a few dollars buying carbon offsets, perhaps to make us feel less guilty about that long-haul flight we're planning. Turns out those offsets could be more valuable than we thought.
Getty Images

This Net Zero Home Will Blow Your Mind

It's a beautiful, livable, functional net-zero experiment -- welcome to the home of architect Shafraaz Kaba. Sitting on a corner lot, at the top of the bank of the North Saskatchewan River, the home is a tall and narrow three-story home with solar modules and a flat roof.
Shutterstock

The Rise of Net-Zero Homes

Over the course of a year a net-zero home will generate as much energy as it consumes. They've been around for less than 10 years, but these buildings and the thinking behind them are taking North America by storm. 
Bloomberg via Getty Images

How To Change Canada's Energy Habits

For utilities, behaviour-based energy efficiency programs could make for happier customers, as industrial and household ratepayers alike are ready to be empowered to better manage their energy use and bills. Similarly, policymakers charged with delivering on energy efficiency will appreciate having one more arrow in their quiver.
Getty

Energy Conservation is Common Sense For Ontario

What's stopping Ontario from creating 25,000 jobs while slashing government deficits, boosting GDP by almost $4-billion and cutting greenhouse gas emissions by nine per cent? Not much, really. It's simply a matter of doing more of the things we all do every day: turning off lights, insulating, buying more energy efficient appliances. We all conserve energy every day, but we can do much more to save more. And to do so, we need government to lead.