BC Energy Step Code

The Regional District of East Kootenay, along with several other municipalities in the region, have adopted the BC Energy Step Code. The BC Energy Step Code is a provincial regulation that local governments in British Columbia may use if they wish to incentivize or require a level of energy efficiency in new construction that goes above and beyond the requirements of the BC Building Code. 

BC Energy Step Code Implementation Timeline 
  • Step 1 for all new Part 9 (residential) buildings – January 1, 2021
  • Step 2 for all new Part 9 (residential) buildings – January 1, 2022
What is the BC Energy Step Code?

The performance approach establishes a desired outcome, and leaves it to the design and building team to decide how to achieve it.

To comply with the BC Energy Step Code, builders must do an energy model at the design phase and conduct on-site testing to demonstrate that both their design and the constructed building meet the requirements of the standard. They may use any materials or construction methods to do so.

 
The Performance Pathway of the BC Energy Step Code changes the building process in three main ways. New builds will now have to:
  1. Conduct energy modeling at the design phase
  2. Test air tightness at completion
  3. Quantify mechanical efficiency and heating needs

As shown below, the regulation sets performance targets for new construction and groups them into “steps” that apply across various building types and regions of the province. The Lower Steps are relatively straightforward to meet; the Upper Steps are more ambitious.

 

 

 

 

 

For governments, the BC Energy Step Code offers assurance that new buildings are performing as billed. Meanwhile, on the other side of the counter, builders have a more flexible option to comply with the energy-efficiency provisions of the provincial legislation. The new standard empowers builders to pursue innovative, creative, cost-effective solutions—and allows them to incorporate leading-edge technologies as they come available.

Where do I learn More About BC Energy Step Code?
You can learn more about the BC Energy Step Code by contacting one of our Building Officials. You can also check out the following resources:
How do I Find an Energy Advisor?
Better Homes BC keeps an up to date list of qualified professionals who can help you with your project. For more information, please visit their website at: Better Homes BC
 
Incentives

A limited number of incentives are available for those going through the performance pathway for the first time. A $750 incentive is available to put towards hiring an energy advisor and $250 is available for a mid-construction blower door airtightness test. Please complete the BC Energy Step Code Incentive Application (CLICK HERE for Application) and submit along with your building permit application for your new home.

 

Last edited: Wed, January 20, 2021 - 12:04:38