Toronto Office Sector On Track to Meet 10% Energy Reduction Goal

Nov 29, 2012, 10:34 ET from CivicAction


TORONTO, Nov. 29, 2012 /CNW/ - Outstanding energy reduction efforts and achievements by the Toronto region's commercial real estate sector were announced at CivicAction's second annual Race to Reduce Awards event last night.  Winners' energy reduction efforts contributed to a collective 2.0%* per cent energy reduction by participants in the first year of the four-year Race to Reduce smart energy office challenge.

The 2012 Race to Reduce awards took place as part of the Toronto Real Estate Forum. The event is one of several during the week-long celebration of CivicAction's ten years of driving conversation and creating collaborative solutions that shape our communities, strengthen our environment, and bolster our economy.

Other award highlights include:

  • Building performance: Brookfield Office Properties and Crown Property Management led the way in Lowest Overall Energy Use, and Crown Property Management and the City of Toronto captured the Greatest Energy Reduction year-over-year awards.
  • Action and innovation: Royal Bank of Canada and Cadillac Fairview Corporation demonstrated the magic of landlord-tenant collaboration at 155 Wellington with LEED Gold certifications. Rogers Communications excelled in the landlord category for the results at its Brampton Campus, and TD Bank Group shone in the tenant category for its employee-engagement initiatives.

Launched in May 2011, CivicAction's Race to Reduce challenges Toronto region landlords and tenants in office buildings of all types, sizes and ages to publicly commit to work together to reduce energy use in their buildings and to reduce the total energy use in participating office buildings by at least 10 per cent over four years. The aim is to improve air quality in the Toronto region and achieve sustained carbon emission reductions in the office building sector, which now contributes close to 20% of the region's carbon emissions, according to the Living City Report Card. With over 600 landlords and tenants now participating in the Race to Reduce, 61 were recognized and celebrated at the annual awards that attracted leaders from the region's commercial real estate community. These participants occupy over 63.3 million square feet of office space - about 31 per cent of the total office space across the Toronto region.

"Last night put a spotlight on some of the incredible efforts and results that our participants are making in their quest to reduce energy and change the way they operate and behave in their buildings," said Brad Henderson, Senior Managing Director at CBRE Limited and voluntary Co-Chair of the Commercial Building Energy Leadership Council.

Steve Smith, real estate executive and fellow Co-Chair of the Commercial Building Energy Leadership Council and member of CivicAction's Greening Greater Toronto Task Force, adds, "With a 2.0 per cent reduction in the first year of the Race we're on track to achieving the 2014 target. The potential is immense - a collective 10 per cent reduction over four years equals 37,000 tonnes of carbon emissions saved, or nearly 27,000 cars off the road. Participants will enjoy a collective savings of over $25.6 million in energy costs over four years, and $12.8 million annually in perpetuity."

*Based on 2010-2011 Total Site Energy Use (kBtu)

For more information about the Race to Reduce and a full list of award winners, see below and visit

2012 Race to Reduce Award Winners
Congratulations to all Race to Reduce participants and to winners in the following categories:

Building Performance - Lowest Energy Use
Awards were presented based on building performance data submitted to Energy Star's Portfolio Manager, and their resulting Energy Star performance ratings.


Under 300,000ft2:

  • 105 Adelaide Street West, Brookfield Office Properties (Energy Star performance rating of 92);  tied with
  • 2001 Sheppard Avenue East, Crown Property Management (Energy Star performance rating of 92)

Over 300,000 ft2:

  • The Exchange Tower, Brookfield Office Properties (Energy Star performance rating of 93)

These winners achieved impressive results.  An Energy Star performance rating of 92 indicates that the building is among the top 8% of similar buildings across North America, while a rating of 93 indicates that the building is among the top 7% of similar buildings across North America.

Building Performance - Greatest Energy Reduction (2010 - 2011)

Under 300,000 ft2:

  • 415 Yonge Street, Crown Property Management (9% reduction in site energy intensity)

Over 300,000 ft2:

  • Toronto City Hall, 100 Queen Street (18% reduction in site energy intensity)

Action & Innovation
Awards recognize participants who have demonstrated leadership and superior commitment to energy reduction or efficiency through their actions and/or innovative excellence.

Building team: Royal Bank of Canada and Cadillac Fairview Corporation (155 Wellington)
This winning team truly demonstrated a strong landlord-tenant relationship in achieving LEED Gold designations for both the construction and interior fit-out aspect of their building.  In doing so, they followed through on their corporate commitments, raised the level of sustainability dialogue with occupants, and achieve an overall energy intensity of 254 ekWh/m2 (equivalent kilowatt hours per square metre).

Landlord: Rogers Communications (Brampton Campus at 8200 Dixie Road)
In 2011, Rogers undertook four key energy initiatives, including a lighting retrofit of 1,549 fixtures, research and design of high efficiency gas-fired rooftop units, a roof replacement project, and a smart satellite-based irrigation system. In addition to driving significant energy savings (the lighting retrofit achieved a 60% reduction), this landlord maximized their efforts by communicating best practices through their Energy & Carbon Reduction Committee.

Tenant: TD Bank Group
This tenant took on a large task by bringing its sustainability program to the employee level by setting a GHG reduction goal of 1 tonne per employee by 2015. They demonstrated quantifiable results (early results show an average of 12% monthly electricity savings) and created a positive change that has real potential to influence other large tenants.

Landlord-Tenant Engagement
Fifty three buildings earned engagement awards. This award recognizes the top 30% of buildings with the most tenant space participating in the Race (as measured by Gross Leasable Area), in six building size categories.

A full list of award recipients can be found at

This project is funded in part through the Conservation Fund of the Ontario Power Authority. CivicAction would like to acknowledge the support of 2012 Race to Reduce Awards Gold Sponsors CBRE Limited and BOMA Toronto.

CivicAction is also grateful for the support provided to the Race to Reduce by program sponsors BLJC, Cushman & Wakefield, Enbridge Gas Distribution, Green Business Standards, Toronto Hydro, and Union Gas, and media and communication partners Canadian Property Management, Building Strategies and Sustainability, and NATIONAL Public Relations.

About CivicAction
For the past 10 years, the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance (CivicAction) has brought together senior executives and rising leaders from all sectors to tackle some of our region's toughest social, economic and environmental challenges. CivicAction sets a non-partisan agenda, builds strategic partnerships, and launches campaigns, programs and organizations that transform our region. CivicAction is led by a Board of Directors and a 75-leader Steering Committee. For 2012-2013, CivicAction has three areas of focus: accelerating regional transportation; enhancing the region's economic performance; and fostering inclusion and resilience. For more information visit:, @CivicActionGTA

About Greening Greater Toronto
Greening Greater Toronto ( is an initiative of the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance. More than 200 partners from corporations, government, and the non-profit sector have joined Greening Greater Toronto and support the vision of a flourishing region renowned for its environmental action and innovation.

SOURCE CivicAction

Image with caption: "The 2012 Race to Reduce awards recognized over 60 winners in three categories: Landlord-tenant engagement, Action & Innovation, and Building energy performance. Winners' energy reduction efforts contributed to a collective 2.0% energy reduction by participants in the first year of the four-year Race to Reduce smart energy office challenge. (CNW Group/CivicAction)". Image available at: