To the editor;
For 20 per cent more than conventional buildings, we can construct new buildings that are “net-zero energy”, or generate all the energy they consume from renewable sources. We recover the extra capital cost by eliminating gas and electric expenses.
Okanagan College has two such buildings. Passive House designed buildings can achieve net-zero energy. The greater challenge is to retrofit existing buildings to net-zero energy.
The 2013 Now House Project retrofitted a 60-year-old Toronto bungalow to net-zero energy. The retrofit was completed while the occupants remained in the house. It’s now healthier and more comfortable. Renovation costs are being recovered in energy savings. It proved net-zero retrofits of existing homes are possible.
With economies of scale, Now House techniques can be applied to thousands of Canadian homes, saving homeowners money, improving Canadians’ lives, cutting greenhouse gas emissions, and creating thousands of jobs for Canadians.
We can live better by consuming less energy.
Environmental Technology Instructor