Helping build sustainable, climate-resilient communities. Where the world is going...for the best financial outcome.
Your (Carbon-smart) Certified Energy Advisor and Step Code Expert
Fluent is a business started by Professional Biologist and Registered Energy Advisor Rider Petch. Our goal is to help clients build low energy, net zero, carbon-smart, feel-good homes. This means developing homes that provide healthy indoor air quality, promote lower month-to-month utility bills, and act as climate solutions.
When I embarked on building a net zero, carbon-smart, high performance home many years ago, the problem was not being able to find a local professional who was supporting builders achieve this goal. My vision was set as a carbon-smart, energy advisor.
Fluent works with existing homeowners to provide creative renovation upgrades that cut energy use and reduce carbon pollution based on energy modelling of their existing home.
Fluent works with builders to create high performance homes and climb the BC Energy Step Code as quickly and affordably as possible. In the short term, this involves working with the builder to optimize the existing footprint for best outcomes. Over the long term, this involves learning and understanding the types of building envelopes, mechanical systems and air tightness levels we can promote to the client as the professionals advocating for a higher step code home. Ultimately, Step 5 homes (which use 50-80% less energy than a code built home) will be mandatory by 2032 under the BC Building Code. This is a significant market signal. In short, Builders who can build these efficient homes now, will generate the best resale value for their clients in the long run. Fluent aims to accelerate this progress with builders. Additionally, the built environment contributes a significant amount of carbon pollution, so utilizing low-carbon materials and carbon-smart mechanical systems (low Greenhouse Gas Intensity; GHGI) for new homes will be important to shelter materials and operational systems from rising carbon-taxation risks. Essentially, energy is not a proxy for carbon, and builders need an Energy Advisor (EA) that understands this for the best financial outcome.
THE HEALTH PROBLEM:
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says humans on average now spend 87% of their time indoors. As much as 70% of that may be in your home. Humans have essentially evolved into an indoor species. The EPA also says indoor concentrations of some pollutants are often up to 5 times higher than typical outdoor concentrations. Think about that for a moment. Shouldn't a home provide superior indoor air quality if we spend the majority of our life there? Fluent thinks so.
THE BUILDER PROBLEM:
Builders are under a lot of pressure to build high performance homes now, and learn how to do it quickly to stay competitive. Carbon taxation will start increasing every year moving from $45/tonne in 2021 to $170/tonne in 2030, which will mean more expensive materials for builders and more expensive mechanical systems for homeowners...unless we start tracking carbon emissions. Builders often don't know which materials are low carbon, nor where to find local low carbon building supplies. Essentially, builders need carbon-smart homes to stay competitive, and to help Canada meet GHG reduction targets established in the Paris Agreement. These measures will also help reduce societal costs associated with natural disasters such as forest fires, floods and droughts...which is good for everyone.
Fluent is here to help. I am a certified and registered energy advisor with the Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) EnerGuide Rating System Program. I track energy and carbon. I have an understanding of the fundamentals of building science and building systems, and have built an awareness of carbon-smart materials for residential builders who need solutions and options...fast. And I am a Biologist with an understanding of natural systems, such as the climate trends that are driving this fast evolving housing market. Welcome to Fluent Energy Consulting!
Fluent is a QA Specialist for Net Zero Home training at: