BC Building Code 2018 Revision 5: Effective May 1, 2023
On February 17, 2023 the province released the revisions to the BC Building Code that:
- Mandates an increase in the base energy efficiency requirements for new buildings by 20 percent starting May 1, 2023. This is equivalent to BC Energy Step Code, Step 3 for Part 9 (simple) buildings and Step 2 for Part 3 (complex) buildings.
- Introduces the Zero Carbon Step Code, an opt-in building carbon pollution standard for operational carbon.
BC Energy Step Code Requirements
From May 1, 2023, BC has mandated an increase in the base energy efficiency requirement for new buildings by 20 per cent. This is equivalent to:
- Step 3 for Part 9 (Simple) buildings, and
- Step 2 for Part 3 (Complex) buildings.
When you apply for a building permit from the RDKB building inspection services after May 1, 2023, you need to comply with this 20% better requirement.
What is the Step Code?
Step Code is a performance-based compliance path in the BC Building Code. It sets out energy and airtightness performance targets for new buildings. Designers or builders decide how to meet these required targets.
Builders work with a certified energy advisor or a registered professional. They use energy modelling software and on-site testing to demonstrate that both the building design and the construction meet Step Code requirements.
The Step Code provides an incremental approach to make new buildings more energy efficient now and net zero energy ready by 2032. A net zero energy ready building is designed and built to achieve net zero energy performance by adding renewable energy technologies.
Resources and References (Updated July 17, 2023)
RDKB Information Sheets:
The RDKB Build Energy Smart engagement site that provides the building industry with a central portal with information on education and training sessions, resources and guides as well as an online newsletter (if you register), Q&A and a discussion forum. https://jointheconversation.rdkb.com/buildenergysmart
Energy Step Code Case Studies
Below is a series of case studies of Step 3 or higher homes in the RDKB and RDCK.
BC Building Code 2018 – Code Changes
This is a recording the BC Building Code 2018 – Code Changes webinar hosted by RDKB and RDCK. It consists of a presentation by Building Safety Standards Branch, brief presentation on regional requirements and Q&A session