BC Energy Step Code

Mandatory Requirements as of May 1, 2023

Compliance with Step 3 of the BC Energy Step Code will be required throughout British Columbia, including the CVRD. All newly constructed and substantially reconstructed homes will require pre-building permit energy modeling performed by a certified Energy Advisor. Energy Advisors will be required to return mid-construction and prior to occupancy to confirm the that work meets the pre-construction modeling. Occupancy permits will be contingent upon the CVRD Building Inspection division receiving a compliant final energy advisor report. 

Pre-permit energy modeling is most efficiently completed if performed during the design stage by way of a collaborative effort between the home designer and the energy advisor as early as possible in the process.

IMPORTANT: Building Permit Applications are required to be compliant with the minimum mandatory requirements (Step 3) and applications must include a Pre-Construction Report from an Energy Advisor. Heating Degree days and Climate Zone for the project location must match the CVRD Climatic Data provided below.

Climatic Data Table and Map_Page_2

Climatic Data 2023 Table and Map_Page_1

  1. Information for Homeowners
  2. Information for Builders
  3. Information for Energy Advisors

What is the BC Energy Step Code?

The BC Energy Step Code is a part of the BC Building Code that specifies performance-based energy-efficiency requirements for new buildings and substantial reconstruction or renovations. The performance approach specifies a target to be met and allows the home designer and builder flexibility on how to achieve that target. To comply with the BC Energy Step Code, energy software modeling and on-site testing must be used to show that the design and the constructed building meets the requirements of standard (Step 3 is what is currently required, by 2032 Step 5 or Net-Zero Energy Ready is required). For more information please see the BC Energy Step Code website.

About the BC Energy Step Code

What is an Energy Advisor?

An Energy Advisor is someone who provides energy modeling, recommends more efficient solutions, reviews construction progress, provides mid-construction and final testing, as well as, assists with applying for any rebates available. 

Find an Energy Advisor

New home construction and significant reconstruction to existing homes will require energy modeling done by an Energy Advisor. The CVRD Building Inspection division recommends that you find an Energy Advisor that can perform both energy modeling and mid-construction blower door testing. 

  • How to Find an Energy Advisor
    1. Click the link above
    2. Enter whether you are building a new home or renovating an existing home
    3. Enter Cowichan Valley Regional District
    4. Look for an Energy Advisor that has BCBC EM, BC ECR, and MC BDT for your project
    5. Please contact an Energy Advisor for a cost estimate for your project