Introducing Energy Compass for Municipalities

Sustainable Buildings Canada is completing an update to its Energy Compass platform through funding provided by The Atmospheric Fund (TAF). Compass is a free online tool that enables the building design community to benchmark performance against their peers and provides access to data all aimed at reducing the energy use and GHG emissions from the building designs they are responsible for.

The updates to the Compass platform are aimed at municipalities that are implementing Green Development Standards (GDS) with Energy Performance Requirements. The updates allow non-technical staff at municipalities to perform high level reviews of energy models for compliance with GDS Energy Performance Requirements. The updates were designed to address the issues raised by municipal staff, industry professionals, and members of the project advisory group. The updates include the following key features:

Energy Modelling Compliance Report

The Compliance Report allows non-technical users to review energy models for compliance with municipal energy performance requirements through 2 components: a Rule-Based Review and a Key Variable Summary. The Rule-Based Review checks for common modelling issues and verifies that input and output variables fall within expected ranges, visually flags issues, and provides a description of why the values were flagged and next steps to follow up. This review currently performs 31 checks, and is expanding. The Key Variable summary presents the most common energy model inputs in a standardized table for the user to verify with the submitted project documentation.

Portfolio Metrics

These views allow municipal staff to view and export aggregate data on a selectable set of the projects uploaded by the municipality, and view trending over time. These features are intended to allow and support data analysis and external reporting requirements.

User Access Control and Project Management

Each municipality will have one or more administrators associated with their account. Administrators can add and revoke access given to other municipal staff. To better handle the volume of applications a municipality will receive, projects can now be organized into user created folders, and additional sorting, tagging, and metadata features have been added.

The project is currently completing the beta testing stage that has included participants from 7 municipalities in Ontario. Feedback from the Beta Testers is being incorporated into the platform, and the tool will be open to use by all municipalities this summer. For more information, or if your municipality is interested in using Energy Compass, please contact