Kelowna city council has adopted an implementation plan for B.C.’s new residential construction Energy Step Code. (Capital News files)

Kelowna taking “steps” to address climate change

City adopts implementation plan for provincial Energy Step Code for residential construction

Kelowna’s mayor corrected a mistake Monday he says he made eight months ago.

Mayor Colin Basran said he regretted not voting in favour of the city bringing in the province’s Energy Step Code for new residential construction when it first came before council last summer.

“I actually do regret not voting to implement it eight months ago,” said Basran after the city heard from staff again about the process aimed at implementing a plan to require new homes to be net-zero energy ready by 2032 in a bid to address climate change.

“I won’t make that same mistake again today.”

Council voted to bring in the step code after staff designed a process aimed at introducing it locally prior to the mandatory implementation of the code by the province.

By step three of the code in 2022, new homes will be built 20 per cent more energy efficiently than they are today.

Last August, council deferred a decision on implementing the code, saying it wanted to hear from the local branch of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association about the potential impact before introducing it.

City staff told council implementation of the code will increase the cost of new construction between 2.5 and 6.4 per cent by step three.

But it was made clear the city had little choice if it wants to address climate change. Housing in the city, it was told, accounts for 21 per cent of Kelowna’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Basran said reading recent reports about the urgent need to act on climate change made him realize he made a mistake eight months ago.

One report said Canada is warming at twice the rate elsewhere in the world and another said the planet has just 11 years to act before the effects of climate change will be irreversible.

“We can talk about affordability, but affordability won’t matter if this planet is uninhabitable. It really doesn’t matter,” said Basran. “Those reports are scary.”

City sustainability co-ordinator Tracy Guidi said action on climate change needs to be driven by the people, not countries, and the step code was one way to do that.

Th five-step process sets energy reduction targets for each step. The code will gradually be introduced under the implementation plan.

To report a typo, email:
newstips@kelownacapnews.com
.


@KelownaCapNews
newstips@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

KFD, COSAR rescue injured hiker in Kelowna

Rescue happened after 1 p.m. on Lost Lake Trail after woman injured her leg

Firefighter spring training comes to Lake Country

From LNG to breaking down doors, firefighters get training from industry pros

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Thunderstorm possible for South Okanagan

The rest of the region will enjoy a sunny day.

Free GolfBC Championship hits Kelowna golf course

Gallagher’s Canyon Golf Club hosts the Mackenzie Tour June 13

Okanagan FC kicks off regular season Saturday night

OKFC starts their inaugural season of the Pacific Coast Soccer League (PCSL) in Penticton

Police say it’s “impressive” no arrests were made after Raptors celebrations

Toronto will play the Western Conference champion Golden State Warriors next

Social media giants in hot seat as politicians consider regulations in Ottawa

Committee members will also grill representatives from Facebook, Twitter

Neighbours help save Okanagan garage fire from spreading

Neighbours knock down fire enough before BX-Swan Lake firefighters arrive to fully extinguish

UBC researchers want to hear from rural residents on health care

Once completed, the project will inform health care planning and policy decisions

Kamloops RCMP investigate violent home invasion

Police believe the incident was targeted

Wildfire crews watching for dangerous wind shift in High Level, Alta.

The Chuckegg Creek fire is raging out of control about three kilometres southwest of the town

UN urges Canada to take more vulnerable Mexican migrants from Central America

The request comes as the United States takes a harder line on its Mexican border

Trail played role during fur trade era

Fur Brigade Trail in Okanagan has long history

Most Read