Neighbourhood Low Carbon Energy Strategy

UBC is developing a Neighbourhood Low Carbon Energy Strategy (NLCES) to accelerate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions and increase resiliency in future neighbourhood developments. The NLCES will define how UBC’s future neighbourhoods achieve resilient and low carbon developments through a combination of supply- and demand-side measures.


UBC’s Green Building Action Plan (GBAP) defined a pathway for UBC’s buildings to achieve net positive contributions to human and natural systems for 2035. This vision was supported by a comprehensive collection of actions, targets and indicators over a holistic range of component areas. The NLCES was initiated in response to some of the short-term priority actions within the Energy and Climate Adaptation component areas. The work includes a detailed analysis of the interactions between building performance and the NDES operations and explores how GHG intensity targets might impact future developments.

Specifically, the NLCES will:

  1.  Develop a low carbon roadmap with targets and pathways for new neighbourhood developments; and
  2. Identify the optimal low carbon solution for providing resilient, low-carbon energy to UBC’s neighbourhoods, considering cost-competitiveness and environmental objectives.

NLCES Scope and Timeline

The NLCES is solely focused on future developments and neighbourhoods. The work is shaped by UBC’s existing land use rules, as well as existing legal agreements, such as the NDES Infrastructure Agreement.

The NLCES includes a detailed scenario analysis comparing different technical solutions to achieve buildings that are both low carbon and resilient for future climate conditions. The process is also exploring different approaches to BC Energy Step Code adoption.

The NLCES analysis is almost complete and is expected to be brought before UBC’s Board of Governors in 2022. NLCES recommendations will in part be implemented through updates to UBC’s Residential Environmental Assessment Program (REAP).

UBC Climate Action

The NLCES is closely informed by other climate action initiatives at UBC and is aiming to achieve a similar level of ambition to CAP2030.

In addition to supporting the GBAP actions, the NLCES updates and expands upon the new construction recommendations from the existing Community Energy and Emissions Plan (CEEP). The NLCES also links in with Campus Vision 2050, most notably through the Climate Action theme.