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BC Energy Step Code for new construction now in effect

The BC Step Energy Code is an amendment to the BC Building Code that is now in effect. It is a voluntary standard that establishes targets for transitioning from existing energy-efficiency requirements in the BC Building Code to net zero energy ready buildings by 2032. This transition is a key goal of the BC Climate Leadership Plan released in 2016.

The BC Step Energy Code applies to new construction of residential buildings across BC as well as multi-unit and commercial buildings in the Lower Mainland, southern Vancouver Island and the southern Okanagan area.

Local governments may also reference the BC Step Energy Code in bylaws and policies to establish consistency for energy efficiency requirements. As of December 15, 2017, any requirements set by local government bylaws will no longer have legal force for matters  governed by a provincial building regulation, except for those concerning 'unrestricted matters' (matters regulated in the BC Building Code for which local governments retain authority to set their own requirements in bylaws).

 The conservation of energy and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions have been added to this 'unrestricted matters' list to allow local governments to support the adoption of the BC Energy Step Code. 

The Government of BC has also established the Energy Step Code Council to work with local governments and industry in the implementation of the BC Energy Step Code to new construction moving forward. 

For further details about the BC Energy Step Code, please visit http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/construction-industry/building-codes-standards/energy-efficiency/energy-step-code

For more information and resources regarding insurance and risk management for the construction industry, please contact a CMW Risk Advisor.