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Climate Change - Building Performance Technology

Mitigate energy and climate-change issues in the built environment using technical knowledge in building science and the electrical, mechanical and environmental fields.

A person stands outdoors in front of a home and looks at the screen of a heat imaging tool.
Start Date:
Typical Length:
1 Year
Graduate Certificate

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This program is pending Ministerial approval.


Help set Nova Scotia on a greener, more sustainable path and help combat the climate crisis through this 1-year program. This program prepares you to assess and manage the energy efficiency of residential, commercial and industrial buildings, and to advise clients on how to improve the energy efficiency of their buildings and contribute to a net-zero carbon emissions future.

In this program, you:

  • Develop knowledge of sustainable, energy-efficient systems, technologies and design approaches for buildings. 
  • Explore sustainable sources of energy, along with building heating, cooling, lighting and power consumption. 
  • Perform energy audits, assessments and modelling using current industry-standard tools and techniques.
  • Design energy-efficient solutions and analyse the performance of these solutions.
  • Learn to ensure new buildings comply with a range of national and international standards.  
  • Demonstrate the benefits of adopting energy-efficient systems and predict the lifecycle costs of installing these systems. 
  • Learn to advocate for more sustainable energy consumption and take positive action to reduce and reverse climate change issues using climate science and energy-efficient solutions for buildings.

You graduate equipped with extensive knowledge of relevant building codes and regulations, and the latest provincial and federal funding programs.

Work experience

  • Field experience is a mandatory credit course, providing the opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills outside the classroom.
    • Opportunities are typically unpaid and last approximately 5 weeks.
  • Transportation, accommodations and other costs related to work experience courses are your responsibility.
  • For more information, visit work experience opportunities.

Choose NSCC

  • This program is intended to build upon previous engineering technologist skills and knowledge to provide graduates with the skills needed to excel in specific roles, such as energy auditing, modelling and advising in relation to the built environment.
  • Field experience gives you the valuable opportunity to develop and apply skills in real and simulated environments, establish connections with industry, and apply your skills and knowledge to real-world projects.
  • Engage in hands-on learning at Pilikan House, a “living lab” and residential demonstration site at Annapolis Valley Campus that provides a hands-on teaching and research facility for sustainable energy systems.
  • Your faculty have strong industry connections and provide opportunities to learn from industry experts in specialized areas of study.
  • This program places a high importance on providing you with skills and knowledge to work in industry. To prepare for employment, you participate in safety awareness courses.

Other info

  • This program positions you to be a leader in supporting Nova Scotia’s climate goals and reaching net zero emissions by 2050 and adopting the 2020 National Energy Code.
  • There is increasing demand for professionals who can measure, model and analyse the energy efficiency of buildings and design solutions to improve building energy performance.
  • To excel in this program, you should have excellent attention to detail and process, a commitment to quality and a passion for combating the ongoing climate crisis.
  • Applicants may qualify for the following bursary: Custom Employment Support Training Bursary - Clean Foundation

September 2024

Campus Full time/part time Delivery Availability
Annapolis Valley Campus
Classes at COGS
Full time In person
Delivered in-person. Some courses may have online elements.
Seats available

Admission requirements

  • Diploma, advanced diploma, graduate certificate or undergraduate degree from a related area. Related areas include:
    • Engineering (including technology and technician programs)
    • Building and construction-related trades and technologies (architectural technology, construction management, occupational health and safety)
    • Business (including business administration, commerce, economics, marketing)
    • Information Technology (including computer science, Health Information Management)
    • Geomatics (includes Geographic Information Systems, urban planning, geography, geographic sciences)
    • Other related areas such as archaeology, digital humanities, forestry, geology, natural sciences, resource management.


Tuition amounts are for the 2023-24 academic year. Program costs and fees (textbooks, supplies, etc.) are additional.

Tuition (Domestic):
Tuition (International):

Tuition, fees and program costs

In addition to annual tuition, there are program costs (books, tools, etc.) and student fees for College services, health and dental plans, your student association and parking.

View detailed program fees page(s). Please note that amounts on these pages are meant for planning purposes only. They don't represent final amounts owing.

Climate Change - Building Performance Technology

Career options

Graduates may work in the fields of energy auditing, modelling and advising. You may also work in consulting with organizations that recommend energy-efficient systems and design approaches for residential, commercial and industrial buildings. Roles may include:
• EnerGuide program energy advisor
• Engineering form software modeler
• HVAC software modeller
Learn more about labour market information – visit career options.

Future study options

  • Continue your studies at university – This program includes courses that count towards a university degree. Find out more

Courses may include

These are some of the courses offered in this program. It is not a complete list and courses are subject to change in advance of the academic year.

Recognizing prior learning / transfer credits
If you have previous learning (course, employment, etc...) that's relevant to your program, you may be able to apply to earn credit. Not all programs are eligible. Learn about our recognizing prior learning (RPL) process.

CBPT 5010 - Building Energy Assessment
This course equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary to evaluate and improve the energy efficiency of buildings. Students engage in hands-on activities, case studies, and projects to develop a practical understanding of building energy assessments. They learn to analyze energy data, identify areas for improvement, and develop customized energy efficiency plans for specific buildings. Building Energy Assessments prepares students for careers in energy consulting, sustainability, architecture, engineering, and related fields, providing them with the necessary expertise to address the growing demand for high performance building solutions.

CBPT 5015 - Building Energy Modeling
This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the principles and practices involved in simulating and analyzing the energy performance of buildings through computer modeling techniques. Via a combination of theoretical study and practical application, students explore key topics including building energy simulation software, modeling inputs and assumptions, simulation methodologies, and interpretation of results. Throughout the course, students engage in hands-on exercises, case studies, and projects to develop proficiency in building energy modeling. They learn to create and calibrate energy models, analyze different building design scenarios, and assess the impact of various energy efficiency measures on building performance. This course helps prepare students for careers in architecture, engineering, energy consulting, and sustainability, equipping them with the necessary skills to design and optimize energy-efficient buildings. By the end of the course, students are able to effectively utilize energy modeling tools to support informed decision-making in building design and operation.

CBPT 5020 - Economic Analysis
This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of economic analysis methods applied to climate change mitigation strategies, within the context of building performance technology. Through a blend of theoretical study and practical application, students learn to calculate the time value of money and utilize cash flow discounting techniques to evaluate investment decisions. They recognize the relevance of economic analysis in addressing climate change challenges and integrate concepts of carbon pricing into economic models. Moreover, students develop skills to employ economic comparison methods for informed technical decision making processes. By the end of the course, students are equipped with the knowledge and tools necessary to critically assess and contribute to the economic aspects of climate change mitigation strategies in the built environment.

CBPT 5025 - Building and Climate Science
This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the intersection between physics, environmental science, and construction practices in the context of sustainable building design. Students develop the knowledge and skills necessary to apply physics concepts to analyze building envelopes using psychrometric temperature and humidity data to identify dew point risks in building assemblies. Through practical exercises, students calculate heat transfer in building assemblies, and determine heating and cooling loads based on the building's performance as a system. Students explore the science and implications of anthropogenic climate change, emphasizing the role of buildings in contributing to or mitigating climate-related challenges. An essential aspect of the course is understanding the cause-and-effect relationship between economic activity in the built environment and ecological resource extraction. Students gain insights into the environmental impact of construction materials and systems and learn to select those that minimize the ecological footprint of buildings. This course is suitable for students pursuing degrees in architecture, engineering, environmental science, and related fields with an interest in sustainable design and construction.

CBPT 5030 - Building Systems I
This course provides a comprehensive exploration of building materials, construction techniques, and system analysis with a focus on enhancing building efficiency and performance to meet existing standards. Students gain an understanding of identifying and selecting materials based on their RSI values, and how these materials contribute to overall building efficiency. Additionally, students develop skills in creating 3D models of buildings using construction drawings, allowing them to visualize and analyze the integration of various building components. Through a combination of theoretical knowledge and practical application, this course equips students with the skills necessary for making informed decisions in the design and construction of energy-efficient and sustainable buildings.

CBPT 5035 - Building Codes and Standards
This course provides an in-depth exploration of building codes and standards with a focus on their impact on human safety, building health, and energy efficiency in the construction industry. Students gain a comprehensive understanding of the regulatory framework governing construction practices, enabling them to identify, evaluate, and implement code-compliant solutions. Throughout the course, students engage in hands-on exercises, case studies, and real-world scenarios to apply theoretical knowledge to practical situations. They develop critical thinking skills, ethical decision making, and the ability to adapt to evolving regulatory environments. By the end of the course, students are equipped with the knowledge and skills needed to navigate building codes, standards, and energy efficiency targets in the dynamic field of construction management.

CBPT 5040 - High Performance Building Design
High Performance Building Design is a comprehensive course focusing on sustainable architecture and engineering. This course explores key principles such as energy-efficient systems, building science, and environmental considerations, alongside strategies for climate change adaptation. Through lectures and hands-on projects, students apply technical knowledge from diverse fields to propose integrated solutions for energy-efficient building design. The course emphasizes evaluating government policies, industry standards, and lifecycle costs, while fostering an understanding of environmental impacts. By course end, students emerge equipped with the expertise to contribute significantly to the global effort in combating climate change through innovative, sustainable building design practices.

CBPT 5045 - Measurement and Verification
This course introduces students to the fundamental principles and practices of Measurement and Verification (M&V) within the context of building performance technology. Students explore industry standards, techniques, and tools used to assess, verify, and communicate the effectiveness of energy efficiency projects in mitigating energy consumption and addressing climate change challenges in the built environment. Through a combination of lectures, case studies, and hands-on activities, students gain a comprehensive understanding of M&V plans, data analysis, and reporting processes. Topics include interpreting and summarizing M&V plans, applying techniques to assess project effectiveness, and evaluating and communicating results to stakeholders and the public. Students engage in practical exercises to develop and implement M&V plans, fostering critical thinking and problem-solving abilities essential for effective energy efficiency project management.

CBPT 5050 - Building Systems II
This course is designed to equip students with the knowledge and skills necessary to understand, assess, and improve building systems to support a healthy living environment, ensure structural safety, and enhance durability. Students gain an understanding of both electrical systems and equipment requirements in buildings, as well as the diverse range of non-renewable and renewable energy resources. By the end of this course, students are prepared to navigate the complex landscape of sustainable building systems and energy efficiency, making informed decisions to create more environmentally friendly and cost-effective structures.

CBPT 5055 - Nature-Based Climate Change Solutions
This course provides a comprehensive exploration of the intricate relationship between anthropogenic activities and climate change, emphasizing the crucial role of individuals and organizations in mitigating environmental impacts. Students delve into key concepts, methodologies, and practical strategies for understanding and addressing the complex challenges posed by climate change. The course incorporates a blend of theoretical knowledge, practical exercises, and real-world case studies to equip participants with the skills and insights needed to contribute meaningfully to environmental sustainability efforts. By the end of the course, students are empowered to critically assess, propose, and communicate nature-based solutions aimed at reducing the carbon footprint of buildings and fostering a more sustainable built environment.

CBPT 5060 - Capstone Project
This capstone project course provides students with the opportunity to integrate and apply their knowledge and skills in climate change mitigation, building science, energy efficiency, and environmental fields to address real-world challenges in the built environment. Students work under the guidance of faculty mentors, using industry-standard tools and techniques to propose innovative solutions for reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions in buildings. The course culminates in the presentation of a formal technical report and a public presentation of the project outcomes.

CBPT 5090 - Work Experience
The Work Experience course provides students with the opportunity to integrate theoretical knowledge and practical skills gained throughout the program in a real-world setting. Over a five-week period, students engage in work placements within relevant industries or organizations involved in energy efficiency, building performance, and climate change mitigation. Through this experiential learning opportunity, students apply their expertise, observe industry standards, and contribute to ongoing projects while honing their professional skills. Students pay close attention to self-assessment, reflection, and the demonstration of professional conduct expected in the field.

SAFE 1000 - Introduction to WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information Systems)
This course offers learners basic overview of WHMIS principles and establishes a solid foundation to support workplace-specific training on the safe storage and handling of controlled/hazardous products. Upon successful completion of the course, students receive basic WHMIS certification.

SAFE 1001 - Introduction to NS OH&S Act
This course offers students an introduction to the Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Act of Nova Scotia, which is required by any person employed in a Nova Scotia workplace. This is a generic, introductory course that provides basic knowledge of the Act for students and is considered to be the basis from which more specific training can be given.

SAFE 1021 - Safety Basics – Hazard Identification
The learners are introduced to the types of hazards encountered in workplaces and the approach that should be followed when recommending and implementing appropriate controls. Two key elements of Hazard Identification are addressed: Hazard Assessment and Inspection. The Nova Scotia Occupational Health and Safety Act is discussed. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

SAFE 1022 - Safety Basics – Working at Heights
The student is introduced to hazards and responsibilities concerned with working at heights in the workplace. Guardrails, travel restraints, roof work, fall arrest components will be discussed. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

SAFE 1023 - Safety Basics – Lock-out Tag Out
Lock-out Tag Out introduces students to the hazards related to energized systems and procedures to ensure worker safety. Related legislation and risk management is discussed and the student is exposed to the various types of lock-out devices. The course material is to be infused throughout the curriculum and may be delivered in the classroom, shop or other opportunity as designed and developed by the instructor.

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