2023 / Net zero

Building today for a net zero tomorrow

For Canada’s electric utilities, inspiring a net zero tomorrow means demonstrating net zero action today. In the town of Coaldale, AB, FortisAlberta has achieved a Net Zero milestone with the opening of its first facility designed and built to meet the Canada Green Building Council zero carbon building standard.

“We approached the design and build of our newest and most environmentally advanced facility as a learning opportunity,” says Janine Sullivan, FortisAlberta CEO. “Our Coaldale office provided us with a way to test net zero building practices in a real world project and its ongoing operation will continue to provide valuable insight.”

The Coaldale operations building, which is situated on 6.7 acres of land with 11,000 sq ft of shop space and 8,500 sq ft of office space, is fully electric with no natural gas services. The building design focuses on reducing energy consumption while using an onsite solar array to meet its electricity needs.

FortisAlberta worked in partnership with the facility’s architect and construction contractor to design the new office to meet net zero energy consumption requirements and answer important questions about what meeting a future net zero building standard could entail.

The Coaldale building produces the same amount of energy, or more, than it will consume in a year. It incorporates a solar array on the roof and in a corner of the site. In addition to the solar array, the net zero design maximizes energy efficiencies and lowers resource use. The building's walls and roof were designed to be more eco-friendly than typical building envelopes. LED lighting and efficient mechanical systems were also installed.

EPCOR Utilities Inc.

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