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Past Seminar Presentations & Documents for 2008

Our past seminar documents can be viewed for reference purposes.

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BC Housing
Oct 2008
National Resources Canada
Sept 2008
Cobalt Engineering
Sept 2008
Constructive Home Solutions
Sept 2008
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
Sept 2008
Home Protection Office
Feb 2008
Ministry of Energy, Mines & Petroleum Resources
Jan 2008


Victoria Luncheon:
Another Brick in the Wall
Wednesay, December 10th, 2008
The Ambrosia Centre, Victoria, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

About the presenter:

Bill McEwen is a Professional Engineer who has over twenty-five years of experience in the Canadian masonry industry. This includes technical and management positions with producers of concrete block and clay brick, and serving as the Executive Director of both the Masonry Institute of B.C. and the B.C. Chapter of the Canadian Masonry Contractors Association since 1995.

He chairs the CSA A371 committee on Masonry Construction, and is a member of the CSA S304.1 Masonry Design, and CSA A370 Masonry Connectors committees. He has also served on the Structural Design committee of the National Building Code of Canada. He is a member of Board and the Sustainability committee of The Masonry Society and is a LEED® Accredited Professional.

About the Topic:

For many centuries we have utilized masonry to support and enclose buildings. Much of this ‘age-old-trade' was passed on informally. In the past century, conventional practices were applied and adapted for buildings of larger size, greater energy needs, and greater complexity in general. The Building Code and building standards often referenced therein have been upgraded to address the seismic, wind, thermal and moisture loads on masonry building enclosures. Bill has a wide-ranging list of topics for discussion this month including changes in the latest B.C. Building Code and CSA Masonry Standards. Bill we also be covering the MIBC on-line Technical Manual; Brick & Block: production, types and standards; Mortar, Reinforcement and Grout: materials, standards, installation; Structural Masonry construction (+ project examples); Masonry Rainscreen cladding construction (+ project examples); Wall Details: wall configurations with masonry claddings (membranes, insulation, flashings, weep-holes, support angles, movement joints, coatings); Masonry ties: types, corrosion resistance and installation; and last but not least Sustainable design using masonry (LEED).


Vancouver Luncheon:
RGC Research Development and Guarantee Standards
Thursday, November 20th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

This presentation will provide an update on the Research projects that RCABC is presently engaged in as well as a review of the recent changes to the guarantee standards for roofing & sheet metal installed in the RGC Guarantee Program.

Jim Watson has been in the commercial roofing industry for 40 years. Mr. Watson is a trade qualified Journeyman who spent 16 years as Co-owner and President of a Roofing Contractors Association of British Columbia (RCABC) member commercial contracting firm on Vancouver Island.

Jim has been involved with RCABC for over 25 years. During that time he served 11 years on the Association's Board of Directors which included terms as both Ethics Chairman and President in 1988 - 89. Mr. Watson has been in his current position, as the RCABC Technical Manager, since March 1995.

Mr. Watson also represented British Columbia for five years on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Roofing Contractors Association (CRCA), serving three years on that National Associations executive. In addition, Jim has been a member of the CRCA National Technical Committee since 1995.

In 1989, Jim was among the first eight RCABC contractor members to be awarded the Professional Roofing Contractors designation (PRC). The PRC is the association's most prestigious award that presented to RCABC professional members for their service and leadership in the British Columbia roofing industry.

Jim is also a member of RCI Inc. and holds the Registered Roof Observer (RRO) status with the Roofing Consultants Institute and he is one of a growing number of Canadian roofing professionals to do so.

At RCABC today, Jim makes good use of both his paid and volunteer roofing industry experience by managing the associations guarantee program as well as providing technical services and advice to people requiring assistance with British Columbia roofing industry issues.


Vancouver Luncheon:
Building Envelope Performance and BC Housing's Sustainability Plan
Thursday, October 30th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver , BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

BC Housing has developed an environmental sustainability plan that includes aggressive targets for reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in their housing stock.  This presentation will focus on BC housing's experience in trying to meet these aggressive targets in low income new construction and renovation projects including building envelope related sustainability measures.   

Craig Edwards is the Director of Energy and Sustainability at BC Housing.  He is responsible for developing and implementing environmental sustainability initiatives at BC Housing, including setting energy performance and environmental targets for existing low income housing projects and new construction projects.  Craig is a Mechanical Engineer with a Masters Degree in Architecture, specializing in green building design.  Before coming to BC Housing he spent 10 years as a building science consultant, working on building energy efficiency research projects, community energy planning projects, energy and climate change policy, and as a building envelope consultant.


Victoria Luncheon:
Anatomy of a Roof Failure
Thursday, October 16th, 2008
The Ambrosia Centre, Victoria, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

About the presenter:

As a founding member of BCBEC and its' first president in 1988 John Wells has been responsible for the dissemination of a considerable amount of knowledge in the building envelope field, not only in the Lower Mainland and BC but across Canada and the US. Mr Wells has contributed a great deal to the development of roofing practices through his involvement with the Roofing Contractors Association of BC (RCABC). John has been in private practice for the last 16 years and is currently the senior partner and president of Wells Klein Consulting Group Inc. As a roofing consultant, Mr. Wells has specified, designed and reviewed a wide range of roofing systems on the Island and Lower Mainland of BC. His experience in analysing past roofing failures and understanding their root cause has been invaluable in helping to prevent future roof tragedies. His energetic and humorous presentation is guaranteed to get the message across.

About the Topic:

This is a look at the investigative process following the failure of a new single ply roof membrane on an up-market condominium building. The failure led to a number of major damage claims to the insurance company and a requirement for a replacement roof after less than 6 months of service. The initial failure on the surface appeared to be wind related but a more complete analysis proved that components of the roof had failed prior to the wind event. The investigation pointed out fundamental problems with the roof and building envelope design, all of which were exacerbated by poor workmanship and the poor application of “value engineering” which was a contributing factor in the demise of the roof.

The presentation will lead us through the investigative process with sketches and photographs. The audience will be invited to take part in an interactive forensic analysis from which the failure mode conclusions are drawn. The intent of the presentation is to show how even proper building processes can go astray when driven by misplaced “value engineering” in conjunction with inexperience and poor workmanship and how they can be avoided in the future.


BC BEC One-day Conference and AGM
"Energizing the Industry"
Friday, September 26th, 2008
Fairmont Waterfront Hotel
900 Canada Place Way
Vancouver, BC

A one-day conference by the BC Building Envelope Council to explore issues and options for energizing the construction industry.  The conference will focus on energy considerations as they relate to the building envelope.  Industry experts from across North America will convene to discuss such topics as the 2030 Challenge, zero energy homes, energy modelling and Part 10 of the Building Code.on major HPO initiatives.

Conference & AGM Schedule:


ASHRAE 90.1 and the Building Envlope
Thursday, May 15th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Proposed revisions to the BC Building Code will reference ASHRAE 90.1 for Part 5 buildings. This presentation will outline the ASHRAE 90.1 Standard, with a brief sidebar discussion on R-values and U-factors. The focus will be on implications of adopting ASHRAE 90.1 in the design and construction of the building envelope.

Alex McGowan is the Office Manager in the Victoria office of Levelton Consultants Ltd. He is also the Practice Area Leader for the Building Science Division of Levelton Consultants Ltd.

He is a licensed professional engineer in British Columbia and Ontario , and a member of the BC Building Envelope Council, the Ontario Building Envelope Council and ASHRAE.

He is a member of ASHRAE Technical Committees 4.4 (Building Materials and Building Envelope Performance) and 4.5 (Fenestration). He is also a member of ISO Technical Committee TC163 (Thermal Performance and Energy use in the Built Environment). He has also conducted several ASHRAE-funded research projects related to the performance of the building envelope.

He has been in the engineering consulting field for over 20 years.


The Envelope as a Noise Barrier
Acoustical Considerations for Building Enclosures

Friday April 11th, 2008
Ambrosia Centre, Victoria, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

About the presenters:

Clair Wakefield is a professional engineer with a lifetime of experience in acoustics. Clair obtained his Bachelor and Masters of Applied Science degrees in mechanical engineering from UBC. He is the principal of Wakefield Acoustics Ltd. a local engineering firm specializing in Architectural Acoustics and Building Noise Control. They also consult for public sector transportation projects including highway and airport noise impact assessment.

Duane Marriner earned his honours physics degree from UVic and a Masters of Applied Science in mechanical engineering from UBC. In the pursuit of their professional services they have measured numerous transportation noise sources and provided solutions using sophisticated modelling software.

They have presented papers on topics of their expertise including Noise and Annoyance, Quiet Pavement and Environmental Noise Mapping.

About the Topic:

Since its inception in 1988, the BCBEC has been a forum for the exchange and dissemination of information and ideas relating to the evolution of the building envelope. We have hosted luncheon seminar topics on technical and legal issues of many sorts, mostly involving keeping water out of the enclosure and optimisation of thermal performance. However, the building envelope separates the indoor (conditioned) environment from all of the elements contained in the exterior environment. These include, but are not necessarily limited to: heat, light (and other forms of electro-magnetic radiation), humidity, precipitation (in a number of forms), wind, pressure and sound . The mitigation of noise generation and transmission through the building envelope must be taken into consideration. When the envelope is designed, upgraded or repaired for controlling rain penetration or thermal resistance, the acoustic characteristics are often affected by the design decisions and not necessarily for the better. The speakers will introduce us to the basics of noise generation, transmission and mitigation, inside and out. They will lead a discussion and generally upgrade our knowledge in dealing with unwanted noise. Please join us in this informative and interesting presentation on the science and engineering of acoustics and how we can benefit from considering acoustics in our building designs.


Masonry Update
What's New With Our Oldest Rainscreen
Thursday, April 10th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Bill McEwen is a Professional Engineer who has over twenty five years of experience in the B.C. masonry industry. He chairs the CSA A371 committee on Masonry Construction, and has served on CSA S304.1 Masonry Design, CSA A370 Masonry Connectors and the Structural Design committee of the National Building Code of Canada. He is a former director and long time BCBEC member, and is also a LEED ® Accredited Professional.

He has provided technical assistance to designers in his role as the Executive Director of the Masonry Institute of B.C., and the B.C. Chapter of the Canadian Masonry Contractors Association since 1995.

The presentation will emphasize building envelope issues in a review of recent projects and changes to the six CSA standards on masonry.

Topics include:

Masonry units, mortar and grout
Structural masonry construction
Masonry rainscreen cladding construction
Cladding details, flashings, support angles, brick ties, movement joints, weep holes and vents
Sustainable design with masonry

Building Science 101
How Houses are Failing and How Part 9 has Responded

Thursday, March 27th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Just when we though there was light at the end of the tunnel, the performance of the building enclosure of houses has come into question. This presentation has two functions: first as a reminder of the mechanisms of how any building envelope actually works including the factors that affect performance, and second as a summary of the new requirements of Part 9 for all of Canada . Is it possible that designing and constructing the building envelope under Part 9 requires more than for Part 5?

Murray Frank is a founding director and Past President of BCBEC. He is a respected consultant and educator in the field of Building Science and has been an instructor at UBC, BCIT, Camosun College and other institutions throughout BC. In addition to his active Consulting Practice with a recent focus on single family structures (ranging from the simple to the simply bizarre), Murray has been delivering several education modules to licensed builders throughout the Province as part of the HPO series of Building Smart seminars. Murray also developed the new Building Envelope Guide for Houses which is a 3D image-rich publication that clearly describes industry accepted solutions for home construction, available through the Homeowner Protection Office in Vancouver .

This presentation will be relevant for individuals new to the field as well as the old guard. A reminder of the basics is always enlightening and what's happening in the Part 9 world is often not the focus of the Building Science community. This presentation will be very informative, very multi-media, and very entertaining!


The Weather Report
Climate Variations and the Envelope

Friday, February 29th, 2008
Ambrosia Centre, Victoria, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

About the presenter:

Dr. Bob Humphries obtained his Bachelor of Science in (Honours, Physics) at the University of Alberta in 1967; a Master of Science (Nuclear Physics) at U of A in 1969, Doctor of Philosophy in Meteorology at McGill University in 1974. As a Canadian Certified Environmental Practitioner (CCEP) his work in air quality modeling projects have generated a great quantity of wind-driven rain data in a number of locations of interest to designers and builders of building enclosures. He has over 30 years of experience in air quality modeling and assessment, meteorology, research, project management, and marketing to clients throughout Canada, the United States, South America, China and Europe. He has presented the findings of his climatic variation research many times in the past and attendees have asked the BCBEC Executive repeatedly to have Dr. Humphries present updated information since those early, very popular presentations.

About the Topic:

The changes in climate over time and the significant differences in climactic loads due to only slight variations in geographic locations are typically not well known and often completely misunderstood. The natures of the impacts of these changes on our built environment are important to the designers and constructors of our buildings. Research already undertaken in BC and elsewhere provides valuable climatic data on which our designs should be based. The impact of ‘global warming' is complex with dramatic implications on the climatic loads on the building envelope. In pondering the future with a meteorologist, a number of concerns come up. Will today's designs stand up to tomorrow's loads? Should we design for warmer and/or wetter conditions? What about wind speeds? Will the windows and air barrier details in place be sufficient? Please come and join the members and guests in this informative presentation and discussion on the local variations and the potential changes in weather patterns on our buildings.


The Homeowners Protection Act
New Tools for Consumer Protection

Thursday, February 14th, 2008
Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Ken Cameron joined the Homeowner Protection Office as the Chief Executive Officer in September 2004 after 26 years in senior planning and management positions in local government in the Greater Vancouver area, most recently as Manager of Policy and Planning with the Greater Vancouver Regional District. In addition to his role at the HPO, Ken is the Past Chair of the International Centre for Sustainable Cities, a member of the Board of the Residential Construction Industry Training Organization and Chair of Simon Fraser University's Urban Studies Program. With former Premier Mike Harcourt and local writer Sean Rossiter, Ken is the author of a book titled “City-Making in Paradise : Nine Decisions that Saved Vancouver,” which was published by Douglas and McIntyre in September 2007.

Presentation Topic: "The Homeowner Protection Act - New Tools for Consumer Protection." This presentation by Ken Cameron, CEO of the Homeowner Protection Office (HPO) will focus on important legislative changes that came into force on November 19, 2007. These changes represent a major milestone for everyone committed to strengthening consumer protection for new homebuyers and enhancing the standard of residential construction in BC. Find out about new licensing requirements for builders and developers, including owner builders, and other obligations and provisions contained in the new Act . Ken will also provide an update on major HPO initiatives.

The ASHRAE Energy Code 90.1
Understanding Compliance with Energy Regulation
Wednesday, January 23th, 2008

The Ambrosia Centre, Victoria, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

About the presenter:

Alex McGowan, P. Eng. is a professional engineer with a diverse background in modeling energy loss in buildings. Alex is the co-author of the FRAME and FRAMEPlus software package used to model the energy performance of glazing and frames, and developed a whole-building energy simulation program called ENERPASS. He is a member of the CSA A440.4 Window Standard Committee and a member of ASHRAE technical committees TC4.4 (Building Materials and Building Envelope Performance) and TC 4.5 (Fenestration). He was also a member of the Canada Green Building Council Task Force that developed the Durabiilty Credit MRc8.

About the Topic:

Our last speaker, Andrew Pape-Salmon, discussed the updates that will become reality in the BC Building Code with respect to energy efficiency of our buildings. New standards and regulations are being applied to design and construction. The first step in moving in the direction mandated by these new regulations is to understand the content of documents such as ASHRAE 90.1 which are referenced by these new regulations. Builders and designers will need to understand thermal bridging, alternative methods of reducing heat loss and how the energy efficiency of a building enclosure can be assessed and optimized to conform to regulations.

Energy Efficient Buildings and the BC Green Building Code
Friday, January 18th, 2008

Plaza 500, Vancouver, BC
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Andrew Pape-Salmon is the manager of energy efficiency initiatives with the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources. He is a professional engineer with training in energy system technologies, economics and policy. He is the provincial lead for energy efficiency initiatives, including equipment standards under the Energy Efficiency Act, and input to the BC Building Code on energy efficiency standards. Andrew has also worked extensively with local governments and First Nation communities across BC to promote energy efficiency and clean energy supplies.

Mr. Pape-Salmon's presentation will focus on energy efficiency for new and existing buildings, highlighting achievements from the 2005 Energy Efficient Building Strategy and new policy actions under the 2007 Energy Plan and Speech from the Throne. He will outline the key components of the Province's market transformation strategy for energy efficient products and buildings, and provide an overview of proposed energy efficiency standards for the BC Green Building Code.

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