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With the election coming up this Monday, September 20, SBM has put together some information about the party positions related to sustainability issues to help guide you in your decision making.

Also, TOMORROW is our next Lunch and Learn all about The Case for Green Schools - still time to get your tickets and learn more about this important topic to the future of Manitoba.  Members get 50% off (or free for students)!


CBC has put together a comprehensive overview of party platforms. 

Check out how each of the parties stack up on climate change, green energy, housing, jobs, and more.
Platform Summaries
The CBC has also published a deeper analysis on each party's approach to climate change, including their stance on:
  • emissions targets
  • carbon tax
  • how parties will meet its targets
  • plans to transition to a low-carbon economy
  • how they plan to transition to a low-carbon economy
Climate Focused Platform Summaries


A coalition of environmental organizations came together to ask the six main political parties a questionnaire on environmental protection, economic justice and human rights.
Their answers give a great visual overview of where the parties stand on these issues.
Summary of Responses


The case for Green Schools graphic with pictures of the speakers

12 Noon via Zoom
Wednesday September 15th
The Case for Green Schools

Years ago, Manitoba was building schools to meet the LEED Gold standard. Today we are building to only the LEED Silver standard.

Why the step back?

What are the benefits of Green Schools for teachers and students, the environment and taxpayers?

At this Lunch and Learn you’ll hear from Matthew Froese regarding school ventilation, Donna Vakalis about the significant health and learning benefits of green school design, and Lindsay Oster will speak about the design features and performance metrics to focus on to make a school “green”. Principal Lorelei Bunkowsky will also share her experience managing the award-winning green school Amber Trails.

For more background on the state of green schools, read SBM’s op-ed on the topic.

50% off for sustaining members and FREE for student members

Get your ticket now!


The most recent Canadian Infrastructure Report Card, the state of our infrastructure is at risk — in fact, it’s failing.

Conservatives often tout energy corridors and transportation for increased trade. The NDP look at social infrastructure investments, including core housing needs. The Green Party toes the line of green infrastructure retrofits and renewable energy investments. And the Liberals fall somewhere in between each of these priority areas.

One of the largest areas for opportunity is addressing the infrastructure gap in Indigenous communities. The Liberals’ Budget 2021 had a focus on building an inclusive economic recoveryespecially for Indigenous communities.  The Conservatives have promised to promote “mutually beneficial conversations” between Indigenous communities and resource project proponents, promising shared benefits from Canada’s resource development. The NDP promises a platform of building resilient communities, focusing on reliable infrastructure and renewable energy.

The Conservatives have promised to dismantle the Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB), and so have the NDP. The Liberals’ approach to the CIB is certain to be a political issue for all parties this election because the CIB encourages private investments. But questions remain around whether private investments actually result in lower costs and faster delivery, and how effective and efficient the CIB is.
Read the full story


A new survey commissioned by Let's Build Together took the pulse of Canada’s skilled trades workforce to find out what matters most this election; from traveling for work to a changing energy sector to much-needed reforms to Employment Insurance.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the construction workforce largely remained operational and played a key role in keeping Canada’s economy going. As Canada moves ahead with a focus on transitioning to Net Zero, workers in the oil and gas sector are concerned; seven in 10 workers worry costs of retraining and upskilling will be too much for them to afford, while three in four workers believe jobs in the renewable sector will not pay as well.

“Building Trades members recognize and support measures to transition Canada to a Net Zero economy and want to play a lead role in building Canada’s green future,” said Sean Strickland, Executive Director of Canada’s Building Trades Unions. “In order to do that, and build back from the pandemic, the next Federal Government needs to ensure adequate supports are put in place to support skilled trades workers – including transitioning energy workers in the months and years ahead.”

Respondents also identified programs and policies that can be improved to better support them:

  • 87 per cent agreed that the Employment Insurance program needs improvement;
  • 84 per cent want to see more Community Benefits Agreements on federal infrastructure projects;
  • 89 per cent want to see more financial support for apprenticeships from the government.
Read the whole story.
Let's Build Together's Party Platform Summary


Architect Sheena Sharp parses the bold policy changes needed to meet UN emission reduction goals in the building sector in Canadian Architect.

What are the climate impacts of individual building decisions, if scaled up to the entire building stock? This is where politicians have power and responsibility, so an election is a critical time to address this issue.

There are four different strategies for the transition: Blue/Green Hydrogen, Electrification/Clean grid, Electrification + Renewable Natural Gas, and Efficiency First. Each has different aspects that will help or hinder it being deployed to reduce building operating emissions by 50% in 2032 and 100% in 2050, the current UN targets.

Click through to the article to see the Gantt charts for each of these strategies.

They show that we do not have time to develop new technologies. We must use the solutions that are proven to work right now. We cannot afford to miss deadlines by a wide margin. We need real teeth to ensure that promises are met. Politicians should be clear about which pathway they support.

"The price of your vote should be that the party will meet the UN targets of 50% CO2 reductions by 2030, and 100% by 2050. At this point, only the Greens are proposing this, with the Liberals and the NDP close behind, and the Conservatives at about half of where they need to be. While compromise is beneficial in human relationships, we cannot negotiate with physics. We need to comply with the UN targets, or we will fail, with catastrophic results for humanity.

But it is not sufficient to just have targets: each country has to actually meet those targets. We need politicians who are willing to say, out loud, that we are going to phase out fossil fuel-derived natural gas completely at the building level."

Read the full story


Passive House Canada has compiled a list of questions you can personally ask your candidates to help you make your decision on September 20.
  1. How will your party address the significant GHG emissions emitted by buildings? What is your party’s target for GHG emissions reductions from buildings? How and when will it mandate this reduction? 
  1. How will your party support the building sector to increase its economic competitiveness while reducing GHG emissions in new buildings and retrofits? Will this include improving its own procurement processes to make the building to passive house or retrofitting to passive house easier for government departments? 
  1. How will your party use the National Building Code to change the way we build in order to reduce emissions, improve the health of Canadians and support economic competitiveness? Is your party willing to streamline the code development process to make it more responsive and faster to update? 
  1. What are your party’s priorities for the national retrofit code (currently known as Alterations to Existing Buildings) to ensure GHG emissions are greatly reduced? 
  1. Will your party adopt Passive House standards for federal government construction and retrofitting? 
  1. Will your party insist the buildings it funds in lower tier governments be built or retrofitted to passive house standards? 


In June we postponed our annual sustainable building tours due to a last-minute scheduling conflict, along with a generally Zoom-fatigued membership.

Mark your calendars now for Thursdays at noon in October because we have a great mix of buildings to tour lined up for you!  You'll get to travel to other parts of Canada, Northern Manitoba, the USA, and Europe.

Mark your calendars now.


What on Earth - Where the Parties Stand on Climate Change

The major parties have made their pledges for climate action. Host Laura Lynch speaks with candidates to discuss their platforms and what it means for Canada's plan to reduce emissions.

Listen here


Sustainable Building Manitoba Membership, building a community of solutions

SBM members are a critical part of the advocacy, education and promotional work on sustainable building in Manitoba.


Remind yourself of all the member benefits.


SBM is proud to be the independent voice for Sustainable Building in Manitoba - which is only possible with your participation.

Help build a strong and engaged sustainable building community. 
Click Here To Get Your Membership Now
For more events in our community that will expand your knowledge and add to your skills, please visit our events calendar.
Events Calendar!
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