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BlueGreen Group and CaGBC Team-up for SBA Certification

For the second time in a year, BlueGreen Group in conjunction with CaGBC delivered technical training to a full classroom of eager professionals looking to get certified by the US based Sustainable Building Advisor Institute.

The program is an an intensive 9 unit, 20 day long course that’s given in both BC and Ontario. It’s lead in Toronto by Jeff Ranson. BGG was pleased to be invited back to participate in this collaborative sharing of knowledge. Specifically, BGG was asked to present on managing quality for higher energy performance, health and sustainability outcomes on the construction job site.

Best wishes to the students!

 

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Toronto gets a Tool Library!

The Parkdale-High Park area gets a Tool Library! Founded by Lawrence Alvarez of the Institute for a Resource-Based Economy.

Membership only $50 annually.

Might Moneygram locations be a good place to donate extra or unused tools! Check out the link:

TTL Logo

 

 

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Greenovate Your Home

I had the privilege of being a panelist last night at Toronto East End Sustainability Network’s ‘Greenovate Your Home’ event with Judy Coffey (Certified Ecobroker and Sales Representative with Keller Williams Advantage Realty), Kay Valley (Proprietor of The Zero Point) and Russell Richman (Professor of Architectural Science, Ryerson University). The event was put on by the awesome Cheryl McNamara of the Citizens Climate Lobby. A great thanks to Matthew Kellway, MP, Beaches/East York and Moderator  Craig Scott.

I was mostly impressed to see about 50 people wanting to get information on how to renovate their homes to maximize efficiency and reduce the impact on the environment. Some good questions on GWP of foams, what’s better tear-down or renovate, questions about condo efficiency, if solar hot water systems can be used for space heating, on the merits of GSHP, on the performance requirements of OBC for existing buildings (Part 11 of the code only requires no drop in energy performance. Sadly. So existing uninsulated houses that are being gutted are not required to add a stitch of insulation.) and questions about insulating stone foundations.

Hat’s off to Dr. Richman who is doing important research on how to safely renovate existing solid masonry homes by using his home as a guinea pig! We need people like Russell to challenge the status quo and give us ‘double brick & rubble foundation’ dwellers some answers.

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1000 Home Energy Retrofit Pilot in Toronto

Mike Layton – the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree thankfully – is pushing for energy efficiency in Toronto Homes. Tyler Hamilton does a great job explaining this exciting news and Mr. Layton championing the concept driven by Sonja Persram and Sandra Lester ( See full documents at David Suzuki & Sustainable Edge ) for the city of Toronto where home owners can finance retrofits on their tax bill. So keep your eyes peeled, and check in on the City of Toronto’s website for more information and or to participate in making this program a reality! Let’s hope this program vets contractors who do great work and that it gets home owner doing Deep Energy Retrofits (DER) for greater savings.

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Renovating your house?

Planning on renovating your home?  Want to increase its value?  And creditunionagent.com make a difference?

Join us Wednesday, April 10 at the Ralph Thornton Centre an interactive panel on how you can create the home of your dreams, all while reducing your carbon footprint. Doors open at 6:30 p.  Panel begins at 7 pm. Greenovate your Home is presented by the Toronto East End Sustainability Network and supported by BlueGreen Group.

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View the Facebook Event:  www.facebook.com/events/405633869532132

For more information visit: www.TOeastendsustainability.ca

In fact, BGG will be donating an energy audit*, which includes a full home diagnostic, dimensioning, blower door air tightness testing and a full case specific technical report.

See you there!

*Some conditions apply, non-transferable, limited to M postal code.

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We’ve moved!

We finally did it, we moved out of our mailbox on Dundas and into the vibrant Centre for Social Innovation building between Queen St. West and Kensington Market – come see our new digs!

Higher returns than a stuffed mattress, and just as close…

With gloom in the world markets the smart money trend is investing a lot closer to home; in high performance homes they can live in that is. It makes so much sense as both a healthy place to live with minimal exposure to fluctuating energy prices. My Mom used to say about real estate in a Marg Simpson way “They’re not making any more land!”

Looking back

Ontario took a baby step in the right direction in January by mandating efficiency by way of the Energy Efficiency Design Summary (EEDS) which sent builders, window companies, architects and municipalities scrambling. With sage advice from Ross Elliott, we did a few breakfast sessions for Ridley Windows to shed some light on the new process and we’ve been quite happy with the developments on the EEDS front.

But you can call us BGG

By mid-summer, Shervin had completed the business plan and we were officially incorporated as BlueGreen Consulting Group Inc. By this time we’d tested over 200 new EnergyStar and EnerGuide80 homes, presented in Baltimore at the ACI Conference, presented at George Brown College, presented to engineering undergrads at UofT, environmental studies at York U, we volunteered our expertise to raise money for the community group Project Neutral and we were part of the inaugural team delivering the training course for the Certified Sustainable Building Advisor (CSBA) program held at the Brick Works. Our consulting services have taken us to interesting places including Globe ServicesLio and AssociatesClearsphere and doing Low Income housing work in Brantford and Guelph with Ecofitt. By the end of our second quarter, we were on target for earnings and Shervin still wore his grin from attending the 7th Annual Passive House Conference.

The times are changing

We’re noticing it. BGG gave a talk recently at the National Green Building Conference by teaming up with Passive House builder Ed Marion; 75 people paid $30 each to hear tech-talk on high performance building. 2 years ago we’d have been lucky to get my two brothers and a friend! New construction is ready to move on high performance building as even tract builders are doing EnergySTAR.

We’re working with forward thinking builders to do pre-drywall quality testing and architects to do Integrated Design Process using the detailed Passive House Planning Package (PHPP). We’re bristling at the thought of making a difference for the people who’ll live in these beautiful, resilient and healthy homes as a sustainable legacy for the next generation too.

A Prosperous New Year

As the year comes to a close, we want to thank everyone who’s made us a success. We hope you make the shortest days of winter special with friends and family. With the growing light of the New Year, we look forward to helping you find the high performance solutions that challenge both new and gut renos. We look forward to growing with you in 2013!

Peace,

Shervin & Greg

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