Energy Efficiency is Improved Through Planning and Design

Published on January 21, 2019

Amory Lovins, Chief Scientist and cofounder of the Rocky Mountain Institute, recently published an article explaining how effective design can be towards improving the energy efficiency of existing technologies at an affordable price.


By improving energy efficiency on a global scale, Lovins says the world could save trillions in terms of fossil fuel savings - even when accounting for the cost of making the improvements.


Lovins recalls his recent scientific article, which said that the biggest energy resource currently available on the planet is the energy that can be conserved through energy efficiency improvements, and that it is only becoming more affordable to improve energy efficiency with time - but that investors should be making their move into the market now.


Through proper implementation and design, Lovins believes that everything that consumes energy should be made to be more energy efficient, as it allows more work to be done for less cost, which is extremely beneficial from both an economic and environmental standpoint.


Lovins explains that energy efficiency is a dynamic process, as there are always new ways that technologies can be used or combined more effectively, and that buildings are the most obvious place where energy can be conserved through energy efficiency improvements.  


He says that by looking at a home or a building as an entire system, it can be optimized for the greatest level of energy efficiency.


The reason for this, is that a more expensive upgrade, such as highly-insulated windows, can actually reduce overall construction or energy cost by reducing the amount of demand that is placed on the building’s heating system - or remove the need for a heating system altogether.


This was the case for Lovin’s home in the 1980’s,  which demonstrated that higher-cost ‘superinsulation’ and ‘superwindows’ actually save on total construction cost, as they provided enough heat for the home to

not require furnace - even in the cold of the Rocky Mountains.


Use Clever Design and Planning to Make Energy Efficiency Improvements at Home

Conserving energy and saving money on utility bills is much easier to accomplish than many homeowners expect it to be. The first step towards making energy efficiency improvements is to have a Home Energy Assessment done by a Registered Energy Advisor.


A Home Energy Assessment can show you exactly how the energy efficiency of your home can be improved, along with which improvements would be the most affordable and effective for you to consider. This provides you with a solid plan for conserving energy that you can follow now or in the future, and can even inform you of new ways that technology can be combined or designed to specifically improve the energy efficiency of your home.


By making improvements to your home’s energy efficiency, you may notice that your home not only becomes cheaper to heat and cool, but also that it becomes more comfortable to live in, has improved interior air quality, and a higher market value.


Quite often, a home’s energy efficiency can be improved for minimal cost through small renovations or retrofits, such as: improvements to the home’s overall level of airtightness, or an increase in the level of insulation in the attic.


For residents of Ontario, having a Registered Energy Advisor from BSG conduct an Energy Assessment of your home can help you qualify for up to $5,000 of home renovation rebates that both Enbridge and Union Gas are currently offering their customers.


The Canada Greener Homes Grant offers home efficiency renovation grants up to $5,000.

Homeowners Canada-wide are eligible for the Canada Greener Homes Grant, announced on May 27, 2021. This new incentive offers up to $5,000 in grants for home efficiency retrofit renovations, plus a $600 reimbursement for pre- and post-work EnerGuide evaluations. Eligible retrofit scopes include home insulation, heating, doors, windows, photovoltaic solar panels, resiliency measures, and thermostats.

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