Archived News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

May 14, 2015

Manitoba Approves New Measures to Make New Homes More Energy Efficient

Changes to Take Effect in 2016: Minister Braun

The Manitoba government has approved changes to the Manitoba Building Code that will result in new homes being nearly 20 per cent more energy efficient without adding significant additional costs to consumers, Labour and Immigration Minister Erna Braun, minister responsible for the Office of the Fire Commissioner, announced today.

“These changes support Manitoba’s commitment to being a leader in promoting energy efficiency in Canada,” Minister Braun said.  “They will ultimately make homes more efficient and will help people save energy and money.”

The changes to the building code, which will take effect on April 1, 2016, include new requirements for insulation in above-ground wall assemblies in new homes.  The minister said the changes will also provide for improved testing of the air tightness of the structure to minimize leakage and subsequent energy loss.

The most significant change will be the requirement of a drain-water heat-recovery system to provide additional energy savings and increase the supply of hot water during peak usage times, Minister Braun said, adding that Manitoba will be one of the first provinces in Canada to require this energy efficient technology in all new homes.

“The province sought input on improvements to home energy efficiency from the local industry,” said Colleen Kuruluk, Manitoba chapter, Canada Green Building Council, and chair of the industry subcommittee.  “This resulted in a made-in-Manitoba solution suitable for our climate and construction practices, all while keeping affordability for home buyers top of mind.”

The Building Standards Board has recommended Manitoba maintain its current industry-leading requirements for gas furnaces with a 94 per cent efficiency rating, as well as the standard seasonal energy-efficiency ratio (SEER) rating of 13.0 for air conditioners.  Manitoba will also maintain its mandatory requirement for heat-recovery ventilators (HRVs) in all new homes.

Minister Braun indicated these changes only affect new construction and will be enforced as of April 1, 2016.

- 30 -