Consumers Council of Canada members were involved providing consumer representation involving two recent high-profile national standards efforts just completed and with the potential to benefit consumers.
Council members participated in the development of a new national standard for Home Inspection recently published by CSA Group, with the recognition of Standards Council of Canada.
Council members were involved also in the development of the new National Energy Code for Buildings 2015.
At the committee table or within the Council the following members have been active over the course of years on behalf of Canada’s consumers concerning these two significant initiatives:
- Council President Aubrey LeBlanc
- Joan Huzar, former Council president, member of the CSA committee that developed the Home Inspection standard and through her past involvement with the Canadian Commission for Building and Fire Codes.
- Michael Lio, member and former Council executive director, as a member of the CSA committee that developed the Home Inspection standard.
- Patricia Jensen, former Council director, through her membership on the Home Inspector Panel conducted by the then Ontario Ministry of Consumer Services.
- Marshall Leslie, current Council director and chair of the Council’s energy and housing committee.
The Council thanks them for their involvement and long-term commitment to these standards initiatives.
The new Home Inspection standard, available for purchase online through CSA Group, is aimed at industry professionals. However, consumers seeking a big picture perspective of what to look for in home inspection service agreements, when they buy or improve a home, may find the new standard helpful. Until now, there have been no independently developed standards for home inspection services in Canada.
The National Energy Code for Buildings harmonizes with Canada’s energy efficiency regulations and industry standards. Updates can be found in standards for lighting, service water, and HVAC systems, such as gas-fired units on rooftops, and for ventilation systems in enclosed spaces like parking garages or warehouses.
The new code is published by the National Research Council and developed by the Canadian Commission of Building and Fire Codes in collaboration with Natural Resources Canada.
The Council has been involved actively in a wide range of issue areas involving housing and energy consumption. A recent panel hosted by the Council has reviewed the impact on consumers of the residential intensification being experienced in Canadian cities.
The Council intervenes on behalf of Ontario’s retail energy consumers before the Ontario Energy Board. It’s members are active representing consumers in Ontario at the Electrical Safety Authority, Technical Standards and Safety Authority, and Ontario College of Trades.
Council members have been active recently in consultations leading to legal reforms in Ontario concerning condominiums and retail energy contracts.
The following research reports have been issued by the Council in recent years relevant to home energy consumption, consumer interests in the housing marketplace and the development and harmonization of regulations and standards:
Residential Intensification: The Impact on Consumers, 2016
Options for a ‘Sustained Institutional Role’ for Consumer Organizations in ‘Internal Trade’ Harmonization Initiatives, 2015
Residential intensification: Density and Its Discontents, 2014
The Impact of Higher Energy Efficiency Standards on Housing Affordability in Alberta, 2010
Sustainable Household Consumption: Key Considerations for a Canadian Strategy, 2009
The Ontario Smart Metering Initiative – What Does It Mean for Ontario’s Residential Consumers, 2009
Renovation Rip-Offs: Problems and Solutions, 2009
Energy Efficiency and Building Codes, 2007
Gaps in New Home Warranty Programs Across Canada, 2007
Consumers’ Willingness to Pay for Climate Change, 2004
To download the Council’s research reports click here.