Greener Buildings Blog

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Durham Greener Buildings: Decarbonizing your building for a sustainable future

A win for your business, your community, and the environment

Did you know?

The majority of buildings standing today will still be in use in 30 years, which means that in addition to building better new buildings, to achieve net-zero and climate resilience, we need to retrofit a large majority of the standing buildings in this country.

Retrofits that are being undertaken today are often not going far enough in terms of emissions reduction and increased efficiency. We need to transform programs and investment toward deep decarbonization.

More than 78 per cent of operational building emissions come from space and water heating, the majority of which is due to equipment that runs on fossil fuels, such as natural gas furnaces.

Electrification of space and water heating will be an essential component of decarbonizing the buildings sector.

(Information source — Canada Green Building Strategy Discussion Paper July 2022)

What will Durham Greener Buildings will accomplish?

Durham Greener Buildings strives to increase participation of Durham Region buildings in the mandatory, provincial Energy and Water Reporting and Benchmarking program (EWRB) for buildings more than 50,000 square feet. The Program targets an EWRB compliance rate of 70 per cent or 450 commercial buildings, These buildings over three years, will share and disclose energy performance data over three years. Additionally, we expect to enroll over 600 broader public sector buildings into the Program. For the Durham Greener Buildings program, buildings less than 50,000 square feet and more than 20,000 square feet are encouraged to voluntarily report.

Perks of Joining Durham Greener Buildings

  • Access to a variety of energy efficiency tools and resources.
  • A help desk and training support services to build familiarity with Energy Star Portfolio Manager
  • An annual region-wide energy benchmarking and building recognition event to celebrate buildings with improved energy efficiency and reduced energy consumption.

We're here to support you!

Durham Greener Buildings Challenge will facilitate, support, and mentor Durham Region buildings (industrial, commercial, institutional, multi-residential, and broader public sector) to reach energy and greenhouse gas reduction targets. We will provide you with detailed resources and technical support throughout the competition. This includes energy saving tips, energy benchmarking tools, and advice from industry leaders.


The Region of Durham is committed to taking action on climate change. In January 2020, Regional Council declared a climate emergency that birthed the Durham Community Energy Plan.

The Plan included an ambitious set of actions to reach net zero emissions in the Durham Region community buildings inventory. Durham Greener Buildings is one of these actions.

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