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Section 9.36 of the Alberta Building Code speaks to energy efficiency requirements for new construction. The requirements were established by the National Research Council and Natural Resources Canada to improve energy efficiency of buildings while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The above noted section speaks to the principal building components and systems in housing and small buildings which are defined in Clause 126.96.36.199 of the 2014 Alberta Building Code. This includes the building envelope, heating and hot water systems.
Section 9.36 is a NEW section in the recently released 2014 Alberta Building Code which came out in early May of 2016 and has a transition period that runs until November 1, 2016. Applicants applying for a building permit on or after November 1, 2016 are required to demonstrate compliance with this NEW section, there will be NO exceptions.
Prescriptive path follows the prescriptive requirements of Subsection 9.36.2, 9.36.3 and 9.36.4. Generally the easiest compliance path to follow, however may not 'fit' all buildings as ALL PARTS of 9.36 are required to be met. If this will be unobtainable, a different method should be selected.
Trade-off path allows for more flexibility, as it allows a trade of elements in the building envelope (above ground) as long as it can be demonstrated to be an equal level of performance without meeting all prescriptive requirements set out in 9.36.2. The trade-off path does have limits and rules regarding how to calculate what may be traded off. The limits are set out in Section 188.8.131.52.
If you are looking at the trade off compliance path, please reference this trade off calculator. A print out will be required with your application.
Performance Path allows for the MOST flexibility. Subsection 9.36.5 speaks to this approach and is only applicable in houses and buildings intended for residential occupancies. One must be able to demonstrate the proposed design won't consume more energy than the same house built to the prescriptive path. This can be done by using approved building energy simulation tool. If the performance path is chosen, it can allow for trade-offs between building systems and may be the only path that is practical for certain buildings.
National Energy Code of Canada for Buildings 2011 is more complex for a typical house or small building, however it is permitted as a means to demonstrate compliance with Section 9.36. Note, no parts of 9.36 can be combined with requirements of NECB.
For a wall thermal design calculator visit the Canadian Wood Council's website.
For access to STANDATA's and for further information on the energy codes, visit the Municipal Affairs website.
For more information on Energy Resources and Energy Efficiency visit the Natural Resources Canada's website.
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