Advocacy: to change “what is” into “what should be”
Sustainable Building Manitoba was key in calling for the City of Winnipeg and Province of Manitoba to establish Green Building Policies. These Policies continue to guide decision makers in their sustainable building pursuits.
Our board and membership consists of experts with professional experience in diverse fields. SBM has had members on the Province’s Expert Advisory Council to implement Manitoba’s Climate Change and Green Economy Action Plan and the the City’s Our Winnipeg Advisory Committee.
We are nimble community that can respond to the evolving needs of the building community to advocate for and educate about the future we are all trying to build.
An example of where Sustainable Building Manitoba advocacy efforts have made a difference is with the content of Manitoba’s Climate Change and Green Economy Action Plan.This Plan outlines Manitoba’s strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while at the same time growing our economy. The Plan contains many initiatives that Sustainable Building Manitoba had advanced to the government for inclusion.
The Plan outlines 18 sustainable building related initiatives that include;
- Enhanced demand-side management targets for electricity and natural gas.
- Higher standards for energy using products.
- Geothermal and solar thermal grants to be offered in areas with natural gas service and applicable to all customer types.
- PAYS (the Manitoba Hydro on bill financing program) will be expanded to include more devices such as HRVs.
- Solar PV will be eligible for PAYS and there will be several demonstration projects put in place.
- There will be a program to increase the uptake of green heat options including solar thermal, geothermal and biomass.
- Establish a Renewable Heat Standard that would set a target for green heating equipment in buildings.
- Establishing a 5 year – $5 million fund for local climate change projects.
- Expand the Green Building Policy to include government funded housing developments.
- Conduct energy retrofits of government buildings with the operational savings being reinvested in future projects.
- “Manitoba will further incorporate climate decision support tools into components of design, construction, maintenance or operation of government buildings, through collaborative partnerships, case studies and capacity building activities”
- Better urban planning of neighbourhoods to encourage transit use, walking and bicycling. It is referred to “Climate Smart Growth”.
- Manitoba will start a building use energy intensity and water use intensity benchmarking program by 2019.
- The Green Energy Equipment Tax Credit will continue.
- New buildings and major renovations will be fitted with electric vehicle charging stations.
- The building code will be amended to allow for up to six story buildings of wood frame construction.
- Updated building codes to capture GHG reductions and other efficiencies using lessons learned from LEED, Smart Way and ENVISION.
- Assess best practices and lessons learned in improving the resiliency of infrastructure to a changing climate.
We continue to work with a wide array of stakeholders to build towards a sustainable Manitoba.
Do you have a suggestion as to an advocacy position that Sustainable Building Manitoba can advance? Contact us.
Thank you for your interest in a sustainably built Manitoba. Please join us!
We have a better chance of succeeding with your involvement.