Several smiling people stand together and one of them is holding an award.

Humber’s continued dedication to sustainable building practices has earned it the coveted 2024 Green Building Visionary Award.

The award, which is presented annually by the Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC), recognizes an organization with an innovative approach to advancing green building technology, products, capacity building, policy, design or operations. As a result, the industry, their competitors, customers, and employees are pushed towards continuous improvement, helping the council achieve its mission.  

Humber received the award as part of the Building Lasting Change Conference Gala and Awards Celebration held in Toronto on June 6.

Aman Hehar, associate director, Energy and Climate Change, said Humber is at the forefront of Canadian educational institutions with a goal to build and operate its portfolio with the mindset of global leadership in sustainability.

"By introducing new and innovative approaches to energy efficiency and sustainable construction practices, we aim to change mindsets in the industry and shift perspectives on what's possible,” said Hehar. “What we do isn't always easy, but Humber embraces the challenge. We recognize the need for leadership and hope to inspire others as we forge a path towards a sustainable future.”

Some of the innovative work and projects Humber has led over the years include:


Humber Cultural Hub (HCH):

• The HCH at Lakeshore Campus, with the first phase planned to open in fall 2024, is pursuing LEED Platinum certification and has already achieved Zero Carbon Building – Design Certification from the CaGBC.  The building will run from 90 to 100 per cent renewable energy sources and will not burn any fossil fuels on site.   

SWITCH Project:

• This retrofit project will reduce Humber’s reliance on natural gas by switching from a steam-based system to a modern hot water system generating heat using mostly electricity. The project, anticipated to be completed by the end of 2025, is expected to reduce Humber’s overall greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent.



• With the help of faculty, staff and community partners, Humber was once again awarded Gold with an overall score of 79.01 as part of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education’s (AASHE) Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System (STARS). It was the highest of all associate colleges in North America that reported to STARS in AASHE's 2023 report. STARS is a self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure an institution’s overall sustainability performance.   

Green Building Standards:

• Humber released these stringent sustainability requirements for all development. The backbone of the standards is mandatory zero carbon building and LEED platinum certification, stringent energy use intensity, high-performance envelopes, resiliency, wellness and more. These standards are publicly available and aim to inspire others to pursue low-carbon development.  


Climate Action Plan Released:

• The plan is an example of Humber’s vision and leadership with a goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The plan’s measures to address greenhouse gas emissions include a retrofit of existing building envelopes, optimizing existing building energy performance, replacing natural gas heating equipment with decarbonized options and ensuring new buildings meet rigorous energy-efficiency and zero carbon standards.


Building NX Retrofit:

Building NX was the first retrofit in Canada to achieve a Zero Carbon Building – Design Certification and remains one of the few institutional buildings in the country to be retrofitted to achieve Passive House Certification.

An exterior shot of a building.


Barrett Centre for Technology Innovation (Barrett CTI):

The Barrett CTI is certified LEED Platinum and is the second largest net-zero building in the country.

As well, Humber’s sustained efforts and accomplishments on the sustainability front have been recognized by being named one of Canada's Greenest Employers for the nine years in a row by MediaCorp Canada. The designation recognizes employers who are leading the nation in creating a culture of environmental awareness in their organizations and who have developed exceptional sustainability initiatives.   

To find out more about Humber’s sustainability practices, visit the Office of Sustainability website.