The Canadian prime ministers’ official residence in the capital, Ottawa, is pictured here on the banks of the Ottawa River on October 26, 2015.

The Canadian prime ministers’ official residence in the capital, Ottawa, is pictured here on the banks of the Ottawa River on October 26, 2015.
Photo Credit: Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press

Renewed call to make leader’s residence ‘green’

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The official residence of Canada’s prime minister badly needs renovation and an environmental group is renewing its call for a net-zero energy retrofit. The residence at 24 Sussex Drive in the capital, Ottawa, is in such poor shape that newly-elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his family chose instead to live at an alternative residence on the property of the Queen’s representative, the governor-general. Trudeau is the son of a former prime minister, grew up in the residence, and surely knows its deficiencies intimately.

‘An audacious plan’

Sierra Club Canada Foundation recently launched what it called “an audacious plan” for a renovation that would have the official residence produce as much energy as it consumes across its life cycle. It would maximize energy-efficiency and use energy from renewable sources.

The group says that a blog post on the subject generated dozens of letter to the newly-elected prime minister as well as six offers of practical support from experts in sustainable building. It acknowledges a net-zero energy renovation would be expensive, but argues it would cost less in the long run.

Many homes heat by burning oil

In the cold Canadian winter, many homes are centrally heated by oil-burning furnaces, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions.

Sierra Club is urging the public to “keep the heat on 24 Sussex renovation” that would be green and would set an example for other Canadians.

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Categories: Environment, Politics, Society
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