A composite image of two headshots side by side. On the left, Department of Architectural Science chair and professor Mark Gorgolewski sits smiling at an angle to the camera wearing glasses and a brown shirt. On the right, architectural graduate student ​​Fatma Osman looks directly at the camera wearing a blue head scarf and top.

Lowering carbon emissions by optimizing energy retrofits

Through construction and operational activities, buildings are one of Canada’s highest greenhouse gas contributors. Deep energy retrofits, especially those that focus on reducing the use of fossil fuels, could lower buildings’ carbon emissions substantially. As more government agencies recognize the importance of energy-efficient retrofitting, research that leads to optimal building performance and decreased environmental impact is essential.

To assess and identify the best retrofit practices for residential buildings regarding carbon emissions, Toronto Metropolitan Univerisity’s (TMU) Department of Architectural Science chair and professor Mark Gorgolewski and TMU graduate student ​​Fatma Osman partnered with Michael Singleton, executive director of Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC). Their research examines commonly used retrofit strategies in Ontario using building Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) to identify low-carbon material selections and optimal retrofit approaches.

This research benefits the construction industry by providing designers with academic insights into low-carbon strategies to help in project planning and design. It will also allow SBC and other organizations to support the development of appropriate policies and procedures that result in low-carbon built environments.

Funding for this project by Mitacs. To learn more about how Mitacs supports groundbreaking research and innovation, visit the Mitacs website.