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WorldGBC International Congress, Part II

By: Sonja Persram, BSc. MBA, LEED AP - Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Source: Sustainable Alternatives Consulting, Inc.

Many important presentations were given at the July WorldGBC International Congress by the visionary leaders and representatives of existing and emerging Green Building Councils. Several of these are accessible via the WorldGBC.

This article focuses on presentations by
Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) Board Chair Ian Jarvis, and President Thomas Mueller, on the CaGBC's new initiative, LEED® Canada Complete which will have tremendous industry impact.

LEED Complete, in development for launch in 2008 (full launch 2009), will fill in the current gaps in the Canadian marketplace for LEED products while adding tools to address a building's performance as an iterative process for certification at any stage throughout its entire life cycle. This development will move Canada forward to enable the achievement of national GHG reduction and environmental goals.

Thomas Mueller identified a plethora of
statistics that show the rapid uptake of LEED in Canada, and outlined the CaGBC’s goals:

  • 100,000 green ICI buildings & 1,000,000 green homes certified by 2015
  • 50% reduction in energy and water use from 2005 baseline by 2015
  • Zero impact from buildings and communities by 2030

The targets stem from an understanding of Canadian buildings' GHG reduction potential.

The following is quoted extensively from Thomas Mueller and Nancy Grenier, Manager of Communications & Marketing.

Key strategies of LEED Complete rating enhancements

  • Life-cycle, performance-based certification
  • Engagement, enablement and verification
  • Distributed, on-line, market-based delivery

Building life-cycle stages at which a building may be certified:

  • Design
  • Construction
  • Occupancy & Operations
  • Renovation
  • Disassembly & Deconstruction
  • Community Planning
  • Site Development

LEED Complete is a Life Cycle Building Performance Management System, with the following characteristics:

  • suited to all building and community sizes and types
  • aimed at universal attainment of optimal energy and environmental performance
  • focuses on existing buildings
  • moving beyond Integrated Design Process toward Integrated Project Management
  • involves the greening of supply chains – driven by design specifications to drive innovation.

LEED Complete will allow CaGBC to ramp up the capacity for a swift and low-cost

  • certification and performance delivery system.
  • readily accessible via a decentralized and on-line system
  • between ~ 1,000 and 1,500 accredited providers
  • certification online, including portfolio certification capability
  • provides aggregated energy and environmental reporting to CaGBC, Governments and other stakeholders. This includes the reporting of lowered GHG emissions, and enhanced operational efficiency.


  • ongoing performance data collection and reporting – a plan for continuous improvement of System Design Standards
  • energy consumption is measured before & after improvements, depending on when the certification happens in the building's life cycle
  • objective performance feedback to owners
  • a database that for tracking building performance that balances concerns between private owners need for maintaining proprietary information vis-à-vis sectoral need for aggregate building impact information

Passive methods
According to LEED Canada Program Manager Ian Theaker: "LEED Canada Complete's focus on environmental, resource and health performance will inevitably push most projects towards taking better advantage of passive opportunities, such as solar and wind; and for that matter towards clean and renewable energy sources… In many cases, passive approaches offer the best bang for the buck."

Technical rigour

  • best scientific, risk, and life-cycle assessment knowledge
  • consensus decision-making
  • standards will be industry-driven and have a dynamic baseline. If a school can achieve a 70 percent annual GHG reduction, that becomes the new goal. This approach will facilitate the industry’s taking ownership of the standards
  • a key factor is the sharing of knowledge: proprietary details in the private sector that will be shared include project goals for the building as well as technologies used to attain these goals.


  • There will be education components for operators
  • Building owners will be encouraged to educate tenants

Pilot Project Goals

  • Engage market sectors
  • Establish performance standards and baselines
  • Test & enhance new product
  • Test delivery model & tools
  • Test & enhance performance reporting tools
  • Provide direction

2007/2008 Sectors targeted for Pilots:

  • Schools
  • Government Buildings
  • University Campuses
  • Residential
  • Commercial Offices & Banks

LEED® Canada Complete's development and achievements will be watched closely by proponents of LEED and other valuation systems worldwide.

Event alert
SHIFTING INTO THE MAINSTREAM, Toronto, June 11 – 12, 2008: The Canada Green Building Council’s first national green building summit.

Kudos to the CaGBC for this ambitious vision, and for lightspeed work already at actualizing it.

Green Syndicated Columnist Sonja Persram is author of: Green Buildings: A Strategic Analysis of North American Markets for Frost & Sullivan (published Aug 06) addressing Energy, Water and Facilities Management; and the U.S. portion of International Sustainable Building Policy Initiatives, a study for Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation whose project lead was Nils Larsson, iiSBE Executive Director. She was a member of the City of Toronto’s Green Development Standards Working Group. Contact: Sustainable Alternatives Consulting Inc:

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