April 22nd is Earth Day, an important day to celebrate because the earth is our first and most important home! Today serves as a reminder for the urgent need to take action to preserve and protect the planet. This year’s Earth Day Theme is: Invest in Our Planet. This theme encourages us to think about how we can address climate change, not only as an individual, but as a whole.
It is only if larger businesses and institutions step up and take leadership that we will be able to successfully work towards creating a cleaner and healthier planet for future generations. Reflecting this year’s theme to invest in our planet, institutions are being called on to implement sustainable business practices and develop strong Environmental Social Governance (ESG). You can visit the official Earth Day website to learn more, explore ways you can get involved, and discover events near you.
How we invest in our planet
At Minto Communities, we are committed to raising awareness about the impact we have on the planet and looking at what we can do to help, today and every day. We believe that to build a prosperous and sustainable planet, we must be thoughtful and conscious in all of our actions, from the construction process to building design. Through sustainable building practices, green developments, eco-friendly features, and investing in renewable energy and innovation, we are working to preserve natural resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We understand the deep responsibility we hold to the planet, the homes we build, and the people who inhabit them, and so, we hold ourselves to the highest possible standards and want to continue pushing ourselves by asking ‘how can we leave the world better than we found it?’
Along with tracking and measuring construction waste, we developed a comprehensive ESG strategy in 2020 to set clear ethical and sustainable objectives. Our objectives focus on energy efficiency, carbon emissions reduction, material selection, waste management, natural systems, biodiversity, and health and wellness. We not only want to ensure the homes we build are healthier for the environment, but for you as well. There’s a reason we’ve won multiple home awards for building innovation when it comes to sustainability, such as our most recent accomplishment as Ontario Green Builder of the Year – Low Rise at the 2021 Enerquality Awards. Our homes also help you live a more sustainable life, delivering you cost savings, comfort, community, and healthy living. Read below to discover the ways in which Minto Communities invests in our planet across our buildings and projects.
- Net Zero Energy Homes
- A Net Zero Energy Home generates as much energy as it consumes, making it 50% more energy efficient than a home built to conventional standards. Featuring solar panels, optimal insulation, and advanced zone HVAC systems, Net Zero Energy Homes produce a lower carbon footprint and preserve natural resources. The second phase at our Union Village project presents the unique opportunity to upgrade any 36’, 43’ or 50’ model to a Net Zero energy home.
- Biophilic Design
- Using biophilic design principles, North Oak at Oakvillage, supports the health of the environment, as well as resident physiological and psychological health. Biophilic design connects a building and its residents to the natural environment by utilizing natural resources and promoting access to nature and green spaces.. Some other green features you can find at North Oak include a whole-building water filtration system, Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations, Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV) for better air quality, in-suite under kitchen counter waste sorting system, sub-meteting of electricity and water to promote conscientious consumption, water efficient plumbing fixtures, an ionized air filtration system in amenity and public areas, motion sensor lighting in common areas, and more.
- Third Party Certification
- To stay up to date with industry standards, we have internationally recognized, industry experts review the design and construction of our communities. These include third party building validations, such as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)® certification, EnerGuide, and ENERGY STAR®. These standards and certifications mean we are delivering on sustainable building and energy performance. Many of our homes also feature ENERGY STAR® Appliances.
- Drain Water Heat Recovery (DWHR)
- Drain Water Heat Recovery (DWHR) captures thermal energy from water going down the drain and transfers it to fresh cold water, pre-heating the water before entering the hot water heater.
- Enhanced Insulation
- Enhanced insulation creates a thermal barrier, addressing heat loss and energy waste that can happen as a result of thermal bridging.
- Green Label® Carpets
- Green Label® carpets ensure fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the air.
- Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV)
- A heat recovery ventilator (HRV) reduces air leakages and replaces inside air with fresh air from outside, transferring heat from outdoor air to fresh air for maximum efficiency.
- High Performance Windows
- High performance windows not only reduce heating and cooling loads, but also provide a consistent temperature throughout your home.
- Individual Metering – High Rise Buildings
- In our high rise building, we measure how much electricity, water and gas you use each month so that you only pay for what you use. This also encourages you to become more mindful of conserving energy.
- LED Lighting
- LED lighting uses less energy and lasts longer than fluorescent bulbs.
- Low Emitting Paints and Finishes
- Low emitting paints and finishes contain fewer harmful chemicals, resulting in healthier air for you and the environment.
- Smart/Programmable Thermostat
- Our smart/programmable thermostats can be adjusted and personalized to your schedule based on your heating and cooling habits all from your phone.
- Rainwater Harvesting
- Rainwater harvesting is the process of collecting rainwater to later be used for landscaping and irrigation. This helps to conserve our freshwater supply.
- High-efficiency plumbing
- In many of our buildings, you’ll find high-efficiency plumbing for the toilets, faucets, and showerheads.
- Water Stations and Purification Systems