ALDO CEO thinks a climate strategy will help him win
ALDO Group Inc., the family-owned company CEO David Bensadoun has run since April 2017 is intensely private, considering its name adorns shoe stores in more than 100 countries. A tour of the family-owned company’s airy Montreal headquarters, more modern art museum than workspace, suggests there’s money in footwear. A direct competitor, Long Island City, New York-based Steven Madden Ltd., earned revenue of US$1.5 billion in 2017.
EcoLock Kelowna pushes self-storage into sustainable era
When developer Don Redden was asked about buying piece of land in Kelowna that had been permitted to build a self-storage building, he thought: “Why on Earth would I want to do that?” After a bit of research though, the CEO of Vancouver-based Ulmus Development changed his mind and indeed bought the downtown property at Ellis St. and Bay Ave.
Geothermal heating proves glorious for these Ontario homeowners
Even with Corduroy the golden retriever egging us on, it still took five minutes to walk to one end of the field I’ve come to see at Richard and Sarah Holland’s property northeast of Cobourg, Ont. “There’s 4,000 feet of piping in three trenches,” said Mr. Holland, his English accent softened after almost five decades in Canada. “They went six, seven feet down; you need to go at least five feet or you’re wasting your time.
Natural light is the most prized office perk
In the workplace environment, employees want sunshine and views of the outdoors more than any other feature or amenity, according to a survey by HR advisory firm Future Workplace. Seeing the light of day in the office was desired by respondents even more than onsite cafeterias, fitness centers, childcare, and more faddish perks such as treadmill desks, nap pods, and being allowed to bring dogs to the office.
Vancouver Public Library unveils new rooftop garden
It’s got natural light, big meeting rooms, new exhibit space and plenty of greenery. That’s what patrons of Vancouver Public Library’s central branch will be treated to when the library opens the top two floors of its landmark building on Saturday. Media were invited Wednesday for a preview of the $16.8-million expansion, including a look at the much-anticipated rooftop garden.
Occupying a high-performance building fatten the bottom line
Since 1985, there have been well over 400 studies conducted that have dissected how key design elements impact commercial buildings and their occupants. That body of research has quantified how high-performance buildings reduce energy and maintenance costs and increase asset values. Newer research has tracked on how high-performance buildings can improve their occupants’ work habits and health.
Creating an energy efficient mortgage for Europe
Creating an Energy Efficient Mortgage for Europe: Towards a New Market Standard sets out a vision for how mortgage lenders and borrowers can come together to help tackle climate change by improving millions of properties across Europe. The report calls on lenders, industry and government to grow a new mass market for energy efficient mortgages and make them available to every borrower on the continent.
Brampton: A big, bold vision for remaking the suburbs
At the corner of Main Street and Steeles Avenue are a Food Basics supermarket, a mall fronted by a Canadian Tire and a lot of parking lots. Nine lanes of traffic growl past in each direction as the evening rush begins. From here, Brampton doesn’t look like a city of the future. Yet, this suburban city of 600,000, northwest of Toronto, envisions a different picture here a generation from now.
Flood-prone cities look to sustainable urban design for solutions
Kayaking along canals to pick up your groceries, walking a few minutes to the metro station, or cycling down pedestrianized streets to meet the neighbors: if you want to live in Copenhagen’s North Harbour, a car would be obsolete. That, at least, is the aim of architect Rita Justesen. Since 2007 she has been tasked with transforming the former industrial harbor in Denmark’s capital into a brand-new neighborhood.
Is building low-carbon neighbourhoods sustainable?
Atop a forested mountain in Burnaby lies UniverCity, an enclave that was created in the mid-90s to house Simon Fraser University faculty, staff and students, and be a model of a sustainable neighbourhood. More than a decade on, the community now boasts a thriving high street, a slew of new housing development in the works, and more than 5,000 current residents.
Alberta to fund green upgrades for non-profits
Alberta will soon fund energy-efficient upgrades for non-profit organizations. Environment Minister Shannon Phillips announced the latest step in the Non-Profit Energy Efficiency Transition (NEET) program at the single-day Alberta Climate Summit on Wednesday. Currently through NEET — which is overseen by provincial agency Energy Efficiency Alberta — non-profits can receive audits to identify opportunities to save on energy costs.
|Passive House Canada conference 2018|
|Passive House Canada is collaborating with UN Economic Commission for Europe Committee on Forests, World Business Council for Sustainable Development, and Canadian Wood Council, to hold concurrent conferences in Vancouver, November 7 to 8, 2018.|
|Passive House Canada Conference|
How wildfires are polluting rivers, threatening water supplies
Cameron Falls in Canada’s Waterton Lakes National Park runs cold and clear in summer through a pristine Rocky Mountain landscape along the Alberta/Montana border. Occasionally it runs a Pepto Bismol pink when heavy rains stir up argillite, a red mudstone that is found upstream. But on June 21, residents, tourists, and park officials were shocked to see the waterfalls suddenly running pitch black.
Bringing EV charging to the home of the future
FLO® and BONE Structure® are proud to announce a new partnership to bring electric vehicle charging to the home of the future. FLO Home has been selected by BONE Structure to be the official charging station of their homes. BONE Structure is a technology innovator who has developed and patented an energy efficient, low-waste steel construction system for custom homes.
Responsible investing accelerates: RBC survey
Ninety per cent of institutional investors believe environmental, social and governance (ESG) integrated portfolios are likely to perform as well or better than non-ESG integrated portfolios, according to a new global survey by RBC Global Asset Management (RBC GAM). The results reveal that adoption of responsible investing – including ESG integration, impact investing and engagement by asset owners – is growing steadily.
Climate change and the true cost of economic growth
If George Monbiot really wants to get people talking about the connection between climate change and the economy, he’d do better to find a different question to “how do we stop growth?” The elephant in the room is the assumption that nature’s resources and capabilities are so large that they can be considered infinite and so excluded from the economic cost of production. This has the unintended consequence of rewarding destruction.
|Tornadoes might have kicked up asbestos risk|
|The tornadoes have lifted the lid off an old hazard that usually sits quietly in older buildings without bothering anyone: asbestos. The use of asbestos in building materials fell off quickly in the late 1900s as hazards became known.|
|Ottawa Citizen, October 1, 2018|
Fitness centers go for wellness
With two-story windows facing an outdoor Olympic-sized pool, the fitness center at the Inspire Southpark apartment complex in Charlotte, N.C., is a stunning showpiece. It’s no accident the 4,350-sf fitness facility is located right near the leasing office. The developers, Bond Companies and Morgan Holdings, view amenities, especially fitness, health, and wellness facilities, as central to the appeal of their multifamily properties.
Ottawa’s Thermal Energy hits record revenues in fiscal 2018
Buoyed by strong sales of its heat recovery systems, Ottawa’s Thermal Energy International posted record revenues of more than $17 million in fiscal 2018, the company announced late last week. The clean-tech firm said revenues for the fiscal year ended May 31 were $17.4 million, up 32 per cent from the previous record high of $13.2 million the company posted in fiscal 2017.
UW battles with startup over clean energy invention
The University of Waterloo is at war with a startup housed on its premises that is staffed by alumni and students, funded by the school and trying to commercialize a clean-energy technology invented on campus. UW, one of Canada’s top science and technology universities, has sued Salient Energy, a six-person firm based at Velocity Garage incubator.
B.C. wildfire season inflamed by hot, dry, lightning-filled weather
Lightning, heat and desiccation — these are the weather conditions that helped fuel another record-breaking wildfire season in B.C. Environment Canada has compiled its seasonal summary for the summer, which saw about 13,500 square kilometres of the province go up in flames, the largest total on record. Across the province, the weather was hotter and drier than normal.
Smart irrigation market expected to grow to $1.76B by 2023
The smart irrigation market is estimated to be worth US$825 million in 2018 and is projected to reach US1.76 billion by 2023, at a CAGR of 16.30 per cent from 2018 to 2023. The major drivers for the smart irrigation market include initiatives undertaken by various governments to promote water conservation, surge in farming operating costs, and growing emphasis on increasing farm productivity and profits using smart irrigation solutions.
Global solar water pump market to reach US$1.9 billion by 2025
QY’s recently published detailed research report indicates the global solar water pumps market was valued at US$822 million in 2017 and is anticipated to reach US$1.892 billion by the end of 2025, expanding at healthy CAGR of 11% throughout the forecasted period. One of the significant reasons behind this growth is the increasing demand for solar water pumps.
Global LED lighting market grew by 10.2 per cent in 2017
The global LED lighting market is highly competitive and is driven by the demand for energy-efficient lighting, advanced lighting control, reduced prices and increasing awareness on the potential health benefits to human beings. LED manufacturers are adopting new business models to combat the drastic fall in prices of LED light sources. The global LED lighting market was estimated at $52,139 million in 2017, and grew by 10.2% from 2016.
Ottawa’s urban forest walloped by tornadoes
Catastrophic weather events such as the tornadoes that struck Ottawa last week are becoming increasingly common, and that’s threatening the lush tree canopy that covers large parts of the city, according to an urban forestry expert. Mike Rosen, president of Tree Canada, spent part of Wednesday — National Tree Day, as fate would have it — helping a co-worker clear her property of trees and branches downed in Friday’s violent storm.
Cleaning up Manitoba’s contaminated sites will cost $22M more
An accounting change has added nearly $22 million to the amount the Province of Manitoba expects it will have to pay to clean up contaminated sites. Premier Brian Pallister says the previous NDP government ignored a report by the auditor general in 2014. That report alerted the government that estimated environmental liability of $281 million had not been adjusted for inflation since new public accounting rules were adopted in 2005-2006, Pallister said.
Frost & Sullivan releases new global renewable energy outlook
By the end of 2018, 154.6 gigawatts (GW) of new renewable power capacity will have been installed globally. The greatest share will come from solar photovoltaics (PV) with almost 90 GW of new additions, followed by 53 GW from wind. Biomass, geothermal, and small hydropower plants are also benefitting from rising electricity demand, decarbonization goals, and government incentives.
New location selected for Okotoks tiny home eco-village
Okotoks, Alta., is exploring a new location for a proposed eco-friendly tiny home village after public outcry. “The town had done early consultations on the idea of having the tiny home village at Kinsman Park,” said Dawn Smith, the environment and sustainability co-ordinator for the town. “We through early engagement received strong feedback from our residents that that was not the ideal site.”
Manitoba to drop planned carbon tax
The Manitoba government says it is pulling out of its plan to charge a carbon tax and is joining some other provinces opposed to the federal government’s demands. Premier Brian Pallister says Ottawa has not respected the province’s right to come up with its own plan with a lower rate. The federal government has demanded provinces charge a tax on carbon emissions starting at $10 per tonne by the end of this year and rising to $50 per tonne by 2022.
LNG forces B.C. to find new ways to meet climate targets
The decision by investors to move forward with the LNG Canada project in British Columbia means steeper reductions in greenhouse gas emissions will be required of the rest of the province, Premier John Horgan said Tuesday. But the precise climate footprint of the project remains in doubt and the B.C. government is openly questioning the emissions estimations put forward by the project’s proponent.
Halifax to provide drinking water to residents with dry wells
The Halifax Regional Municipality is starting a program to provide drinking water and shower facilities to residents dealing with significantly low well water levels because of a lack of rain over the last few months. Deputy fire Chief Roy Hollett said between 60 and 70 homes so far have reported issues with their wells. The municipality said the problem is especially acute in the Prospect area and along the Eastern Shore.
B.C. recycled a billion drink containers last year
British Columbia kept one billion drink containers out of its landfills last year, and the non-profit organization in charge of recycling them is thirsty for more. Encorp, the organization that leads the B.C. beverage recycling program, is planning to boost the province’s 75 per cent return rate by introducing a more convenient way for people to drop off their empty containers.
P.E.I. event planner pitching wheat bran plates and cutlery
An event planner from Charlottetown, P.E.I. is hoping a product made in Poland will be a way to reduce single use plastics in the Maritimes. Biotrem makes plates, bowls and cutlery from wheat bran. “I think I’m like lots of people, you look around there’s plastic everywhere, we seem to be drowning in it,” said Mark Carr-Rollitt, owner of Transform Events and Consulting.