City of Victoria preparing industry for November enactment of BC Energy Step Code

City of Victoria Council adopted the BC Energy Step Code on April 26, 2018. The adopted approach was the result of nine months of industry engagement in order to arrive at an approach that balances industry readiness, cost implications, and City climate action goals.

The purpose of this message is to provide industry members with ample notice so that preparations can be made in advance of November 2018 enactment.

What is the BC Energy Step Code?

  • The Step Code is a provincial standard that establishes progressive performance steps in energy efficiency for new buildings from the current BC Building Code level to net zero energy ready buildings by 2032.
  • The Step Code will apply to new residential and commercial buildings. To comply, builders must use energy modelling software and on-site air tightness testing to demonstrate that both their design and the constructed building meet the requirements of the Step Code.

What Step(s) did the City adopt?

The adopted approach, including timelines, is summarized in the image below, and was recommended based on feedback heard from industry throughout the engagement process that began in September 2017.

STEP Code City of Victoria

* staff will be taking a monitoring approach after January 2020, in order to determine the timing for implementation of the higher Steps of the code after this time.

How does this affect my project and timelines?

  • Building permits applied for prior to November 1st, 2018 will be considered in-stream and will not be subject to Step Code requirements.
  • Building permits applied for between November 1st, 2018 and December 31st, 2019 will need to demonstrate compliance with Step 1 of the Step Code.
  • Building permits applied for after January 1st, 2020 will need to demonstrate compliance with the Steps adopted for that particular building typology (see summary image above).

Need more info?

  • More information about the Step Code, the industry engagement approach, feedback heard, and final recommendations can be found online on the City’s Green Building page.
  • More information and resources on the Step Code, including the Provincial Best Practices guide, Design Guide, costing study, technical webinars, and FAQs, can be found at
  • If you have further questions, you can contact Devon Miller, Community Energy Planner at City of Victoria at

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