Canadians experience extreme cold in the winter and periods of extreme heat in the summer. Yet, only 10 per cent of our buildings are energy efficient. Green Homes and Green Buildings is about making what we have as efficient as possible while simultaneously cutting greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change. Improving energy efficiency is a clean, inexpensive and prudent step that can pay for itself over the long term.
A green economy is more than an idea. There are lots of examples of energy efficiency, green homes and green buildings all over the world. Improved energy efficiency is also a proven way to create jobs. A $1.1 billion dollar homes and buildings retrofit public program could be designed to leverage $50 billion dollars in private expenditures. That’s enough to create one million person job years of employment. Not only would such a program create jobs, but it would also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 10 million tonnes by 2020 and leave Canadians with more efficient homes and buildings, which saves us money too.
There is no question – we need green homes and buildings so we can reduce our reliance on fossil fuels to ensure that the future needs of Canadians are met. This will ensure both jobs for today and a clean planet for tomorrow.