Despite housing shortage, City of Montreal to require all new buildings to be “zero emission” by 2025

The new measures were announced at Montreal’s Climate Summit.

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Despite an ongoing housing shortage, the City of Montreal, home to nearly 2 million people, will add strict requirements to new developments.

Starting in 2025, every new building in Montreal will need to be “zero emission”, meaning they will need to produce no carbon emission or they will need to offset any emission they generate.

In 2040, every new construction will need to be entirely powered by renewable energy.

“This is an important and necessary step that we are taking to accelerate the ecological transition, because I repeat, we can no longer wait to act”, the mayor Valérie Plante said during the announcement.

Plante, who was recently re-elected as Montreal’s mayor, is a well-known member of the left-wing political spectrum.

A new law that took effect in 2022 made it mandatory for large buildings to reveal their energy consumption to the city.

Starting next year, small building owners will also have to disclose any combustion heating device (oil or natural gas).

“I have to accept that I won’t be able to win all my battles, don’t think that by being in government I can solve everything alone”, Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault, who was present at the event, said in support of Montreal’s announcement.

The environment minister of Quebec, Benoit Charette, was also present.

Like many other Canadian cities, Montreal has been home to a vicious housing shortage. Just in 2020, rents increased by nearly 5%. Monthly sales listings have also decreased dramatically over the last years, as prices reached all-time highs that made it largely impossible for middle-class households to purchase property in the city.

The city’s left-wing administration has not adopted a pro-development agenda to bring more supply to the market and resolve the housing crisis. On the contrary, they have adopted a radically ‘green’ agenda, making it difficult to develop housing affordably.

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