Royal Architectural Institute of Canada

Allan Teramura meets with the Minister of Environment and Climate Change

In late December, shortly after Parliament rose for the year, I had the opportunity to have lunch with the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.

I found the Minister to be well-informed about the role the building sector can play in achieving the country’s climate objectives, to the point that she spoke knowledgeably about the German Passivhaus initiative, and the opportunity it represents for Canadian manufacturers of building components, such as windows. We also discussed the need for retrofitting existing buildings, and the role good design can play in this process.

After a wide-ranging conversation, I left her with a book that was required reading when I was an Environmental Studies student in the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Architecture: Passive Solar Design in Canada, a discussion paper published by Natural Resources Canada in the late 1970s. She was surprised to learn that Canada was once a global leader in this issue and that the federal government was instrumental in this. She vowed to present this document to the current Minister of Natural Resources, as proof that this can be done again.

The Minister expressed interest in the RAIC’s Indigenous Task Force and suggested that we meet with the Indigenous and Northern Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett.

Although my term as RAIC President is over, I am confident that the RAIC will continue to develop this relationship, and build new ones.

 

Allan Teramura, PP/FRAIC