CGBC launches Zero Carbon Building Standard v2 (with EC)

On March 10 the Canada Green Building Council updated the “Zero Carbon Building Standard” (see press release here)

The update includes: “Embodied Carbon: Projects must now reduce and offset carbon emissions for the building’s life-cycle including those associated with the manufacture and use of construction materials.”

I’ve only glanced at standard but it does note " Applicants must conduct a life-cycle assessment ( LCA ) of the building materials that includes the following life-cycle stages,

• Upfront carbon (life-cycle stages A1-5)

• Use stage embodied carbon (life-cycle stages B1-5)

• End of life carbon (life-cycle stages C1-4)"


GO CANADA!!! Lots of exciting embodied carbon leadership coming from Canada!


Lots of great stuff on embodied carbon. The zero carbon balance now included embodied carbon. We are encouraging building reuse, and we have innovation strategies for a 20% reduction in embodied carbon, or an upfront embodied carbon value of zero through sequestration (thanks Chris Magwood). LCA must now begin by schematic design.

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My research group in the University of British Columbia is working on a campus pilot project that is aiming for zero carbon building. Please contact me if anybody needs details about this project.

Hello Haibo,
Could please send more details on the project. Actually, we are working on similar project at the University of Biskra, laboratory of Architecture and Environmental Design (LaCoMoFa) Algeria.


Hello Noureddine,
Thanks for your interest.
You can find the Canada zero carbon building standard here:

Please send me an Email: for further information.

Talk to you soon.
Haibo Feng

Thanks for sharing @Haibo.Feng.
I look forward to seeing what you achieve at UBC.

And I’d like to see something like this incorporated in the South African GBCSA standards.

In my new Architecture and life cycle thinking course, one of the assignments was for students to review two published documents on buildings related carbon, and compare and contrast them and see how the two documents could complement each other. The two documents were CGBC’s zero carbon building standard and your article on embodied carbon of 1007 buildings (not the full report). One of the tasks was for students to map what is covered and where from A1-D perspective.
With this update of CGBC’s standard, such comparison would be less interesting come next year when I will be teaching the course for the second time given the standard is full A1-C4 now :blush: