Municipalities are responsible for about 50 per cent of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions produced across Canada. A new report emphasizes that incorporating multiple community priorities into retrofit work will help get everyone’s attention and get local citizens on board. The deep retrofit space is growing, and creating jobs, which is a key avenue to reaching Canada’s net-zero targets.

Municipalities can support this work by exploring alternative and new approaches to design and procurement.

“Canadian municipalities are in a unique position to impact Canada’s climate targets,” says Emma Norton, co-researcher and co-writer with Gemma Pinchin of “Getting the Most Out of Your Retrofits,” a new report from The Recover Initiative and QUEST Canada.

“Intended for staff of small-to-medium-sized municipalities tasked with significantly reducing energy and emissions, the research and report offers guidance drawn from advice gathered from experts in the field, to assist municipal staffers in getting deep retrofit work off the ground in their municipality,” explains Norton.

Produced with funding from Natural Resources Canada, The Atmospheric Fund, and the Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources and Renewables, the report began with a jurisdictional scan of Canadian organizations and entities that operate in the municipal energy space, research which fed into a literature review.

RNG Handbook

“A key takeaway from the expert interviews is the need to include people from across the municipality,” Pinchin points out. “Deep retrofit projects should include everybody involved in the facility from the beginning, including a broad project team, and an integrated approach to reduce some of the traditional implementation struggles.”

Ultimately, as climate change continues to put stress on municipalities, the authors of the report agree, deep retrofits offer an opportunity to “consider municipal buildings differently.” And because of municipalities’ unique position to impact Canada’s net-zero climate targets, Norton and  Pinchin emphasize, “their commitment to enhancing energy efficiency through the deep retrofitting of their building stock is right now, quite simply crucial.”

Read the complete report here:

Featured image credit: Getty Images

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