Resources for Local Governments
This page has resources that are of particular interest to local governments which may, if they wish, use the BC Energy Step Code to increase the energy performance of new buildings in their communities.
1. BC Energy Step Code Requirements
- The amended Building Act General Regulation identifies two unrestricted matters enacted to support local government use of the BC Energy Step Code.
- The April 2017 amended British Columbia Building Code Regulation – provides the technical requirements of the BC Energy Step Code
- The January 2018 amended British Columbia Building Code Regulation – applies to building permit applications submitted on or after January 31, 2018
- Ministerial Order BA 2018 2 amending the BC Building Code (BC Energy Step Code) – applies to building permit applications submitted on or after December 10, 2018
- Technical Bulletin B18-08 describes the changes to the BC Energy Step Code effective December 10, 2018
BC Energy Step Code Convenience Copies
- The BC Energy Step Code convenience copy (PDF, 467KB) applies to projects applying for building permits from April 7, 2017 to January 30, 2018
- The BC Energy Step Code convenience copy (PDF, 506KB) applies to building permit applications submitted from January 31, 2018 to December 9, 2018
City of Vancouver Energy Modelling Guidelines
- The City of Vancouver’s Energy Modelling Guidelines Version 1 (PDF), March 2017
- The City of Vancouver’s Energy Modelling Guidelines Version 2 (PDF), July 2018
- You can also review a track changes copy of Version 2
- Prior to December 10, 2018, the BC Energy Step Code referenced Version 1 of the City of Vancouver’s Modelling Guidelines; effective December 10, 2018, it references Version 2
Best Practices Guide
The Best Practices Guide is a resource for all local governments in British Columbia interested in referencing the BC Energy Step Code in policies, programs, or bylaws. It is a publication of the Energy Step Code Council and the Building and Safety Standards Branch.
The guide delves into the nuts and bolts of the standard, and offers context and clear information on the characteristics of each step. It highlights anticipated costs and benefits and offers guidance on suggested timelines and effective engagement for developing a community-specific strategy for implementing the BC Energy Step Code.
Provincial Policy Guide
This guide explains the policy intent of the BC Energy Step Code and its use and application by local governments and other local authorities under the Building
BC Housing Resources
BC Housing is developing a variety of resources to increase familiarity with the BC Energy Step Code.
- An Illustrated Guide to Achieving Airtight Buildings | 2017
- This guide is an industry resource to design, build and test airtight buildings. It also consolidates information on achieving airtightness in buildings, with a focus on larger or more complex building types while ensuring building enclosure performance, including moisture management, thermal performance and durability
- BC Energy Step Code Builder Guide | 2018
- This guide provides information on the key strategies and approaches that builders can use to meet the BC Energy Step Code for houses and low-rise (Part 3 and Part 9) wood-frame residential buildings up to six storeys. It’s a companion work to the BC Energy Step Code Design Guide.
- BC Energy Step Code Design Guide | 2018
- This guide provides information on the key strategies and approaches to meeting the Energy Step Code in mid- and high-rise (Part 3) wood-frame and non-combustible residential buildings within B.C.
- Guide to Low Energy Demand for Large Buildings | 2018
- This guide aims to broaden the common understanding of how large buildings can meet higher levels of performance as required by Passive House, BC Energy Step Code, City of Vancouver Zero Emission Building Plan and City of Toronto Zero Emissions Building Framework – this guide has a focus on current Canadian code requirements, construction practice and tested systems
- BC Energy Step Code Local Government Survey 2017 (PDF, 424KB) | Published by BC Housing | 2017
- BC Energy Step Code Local Government Survey 2018 (PDF, 1.4MB) | Published by BC Housing | 2018
Visit Case Studies to learn how and why builders and communities are using British Columbia’s new energy-performance building standard.
BC Energy Step Code Metrics Research Report
The BC Energy Step Code Metrics Research Report presents the findings of a comprehensive exploration of the energy, emissions and economic impacts of the BC Energy Step Code. The research represents one of the most extensive energy analyses of buildings in Canada.
- 2017 Metrics Research Summary Report (PDF, 2MB)
- 2017 Metrics Research Full Report (PDF, 3MB)
- 2018 Metrics Research Full Report Update (PDF, 4.4MB)
BC Energy Step Code Bulletins
- Learn how local governments adopting the BC Energy Step Code for Part 9 buildings can, at no additional cost to the builder, ensure home buyers have a home energy label that provides information about the energy performance of the home
- Read the Put a Label on It full report (PDF, 1.1MB) to learn more about the opportunities and benefits of energy labelling disclosure for new homes
BC Energy Step Code Brand Handbook
The two-volume Brand Handbook provides design and style guidance for governments, organizations, or companies that would like to use the brand to communicate accurate information about the standard to constituents, customers, or stakeholders.
BC Energy Step Code PPT
3. Compliance Tools
Local-government officials may use the forms below to enforce BC Energy Step Code policy. These forms aim to streamline and standardize the compliance process across the province, while reducing headaches for designers working in multiple jurisdictions.
BC Energy Compliance Reports – Performance Paths for Part 9 Buildings
These reports provide a standardized report template for Part 9 buildings complying with Subsection 9.36.5. or 9.36.6. of the 2012 BC Building Code. These reports will be highly useful for building officials monitoring compliance with the BC Building Code.
- BC Energy Compliance Report: Pre-Construction v1.1 (PDF) – A builder would submit this form to an official when applying for a permit, to demonstrate design-stage compliance with the BC Energy Step Code requirements
- BC Energy Compliance Report: As-Built v 1.1 (PDF) – A builder would submit this form to an official following construction—and prior to final inspection or occupancy—to verify airtightness and other performance requirements
- Technical Bulletin B18-03 (PDF) (The BC Energy Compliance Reports – Performance Paths for Part 9 Buildings) – provides a plain-language description of the reports and how they can be used
4. Local Government Peer Networks
The Sustainable Communities Program at BC Hydro hosts two networks designed to support local government staff members with BC Energy Step Code implementation. One addresses issues specific to smaller communities, and one assists larger communities. Join a network to learn what other local governments are doing, get advice, ask questions, share ideas, sign up for newsletters and more. Contact: email@example.com.
5. Energy Step Code Council Notification Form
For the next few years, the Energy Step Code Council will be closely following local government interest in the BC Energy Step Code. Our goal is to better direct and inform industry capacity-building efforts, and identify potential training shortfalls or capacity crunches. Local governments are asked to signal their intentions to the Energy Step Code Council – through the Province’s Building and Safety Standards Branch – at two key points in the implementation process:
- Initial Notification: When a government begins consultation with industry on its proposed approach
- Final Notification: When a government establishes or ratifies a bylaw, policy or program that references the BC Energy Step Code
Learn more via Notification.
6. Incentive Programs
Learn about a range of financial incentive programs for energy-efficient buildings constructed in B.C. for
- residential renovations
- residential new construction
- commercial renovations
- commercial new construction
Better Buildings BC: The Net-Zero Energy-Ready Challenge
Better Buildings BC is a provincial incentive program and juried competition designed to support, promote and celebrate the design and construction of net-zero energy-ready buildings. Expressions of interest must be submitted to the Program Administrator no later than 11:59pm on November 30, 2018.
- Visit Better Buildings BC: The Net-Zero Energy-Ready Challenge for more information and application information
7. Events and Recorded Presentations
Visit Events to find out about upcoming presentations. Below, we offer links to recordings of past events.
Summer 2017 Local Government Webinar Series
This three-part webinar series provided an introduction to the BC Energy Step Code.
- Webinar 1 | June 2017 | How Governments and Industry are Getting Ready for the BC Energy Step Code | external link to webinar 1
- Webinar 2 | June 2017 | A Sneak Peek Inside the BC Energy Step Code Best Practices Guide | external link to webinar 2
- Webinar 3 | July 2017 | Preliminary Insights from the BC Energy Step Code Costing Study | external link to webinar 3
Introductory Webinar on the BC Energy Step Code
The BC Energy Step Code and the Future of BC’s Built Environment (external link) addresses how how the BC Energy Step Code works, and how local governments and industry can implement it.
BC Energy Step Code Technical Training Series
This four-part technical-training series introduces builders and practitioners to the BC Energy Step Code it, explains how it applies to Part 9 and Part 3 buildings, and reviews how local governments will enforce its requirements. Each session is about one hour.
- Part 1: Introduction to the Energy Step Code (video link) – summary (PDF, 251KB)
- Part 2: The Energy Step Code for Part 9 Buildings (video link) – summary (PDF, 252KB)
- Part 3: The Energy Step Code for Part 3 Buildings (video link) – summary (PDF, 253KB)
- Part 4: Enforcement of the Energy Step Code (video link) – summary (PDF, 275KB)
Last Updated: December 10, 2018.