Nov 2021- Energy Efficiency Report Released
Dear Toronto 2030 District Partners,
We hope that you are all enjoying the spring season.
We are pleased to send this brief synopsis of the third report in our Pathways to Net Zero research project. This report investigates how energy efficiency measures impact the cost of fuel switching for decarbonizing buildings. This work is designed as a resource for and to spark discussion in the Toronto 2030 District Community.
Summary of Report on Energy Efficiency
Read the Full Report: Energy Efficiency
This report focuses on the financial costs and benefits of energy efficiency retrofits that reduce heating demand in buildings and impacts the costs of fuel switching. The report investigates four measures identified to have the largest potential for energy savings in three building types – office, multifamily residential, and single-family homes:
- Upgrade Windows
- Increase Wall Insulation
- Upgrade Roof Insulation
- Add energy Recovery Ventilators
Our analysis shows that at the system level, energy efficiency measures could reduce peak demand for all three building types evaluated. These measures reduce emissions and improve comfort with modest savings or neutral cost impacts.
However, the research determined that even when considering higher fuel costs for zero carbon heating energy, replacing building components before their end-of-life for the sole purpose of reducing energy demand is generally economically unattractive. It is improbable in the current environment that the quest for energy efficiency improvements in buildings will be a key driver of the transition towards net-zero.
This does not mean disregarding energy efficiency, but our cost analysis indicates that substantial policy interventions will be essential if improved energy efficiency is required to achieve system performance needs.