Shift by Alberta Innovates

Shift for Inventures – Taming Urban Jungles

May 24, 2022 Shift Season 3 Episode 11
Shift by Alberta Innovates
Shift for Inventures – Taming Urban Jungles
Show Notes

As part of a special Shift series on Inventures 2022, we’re presenting an episode for each of the seven content tracks featured at this year’s event. 

This episode puts a spotlight on the track Taming Urban Jungles and features an interview with Ben Hildebrant, a principal investigator with SAIT’s Green Building Technologies Access Centre. Green Building Technologies’ researchers work with industry partners and students to help small-to-medium sized enterprises develop new technologies and processes, enhancing the commercializing of green technologies in Canada. 

One of their pilot projects is The Confluence, a residential home striving for full certification under the most rigorous green building standard in the world, the Living Building Challenge. Learn more about the house and see pictures at

Taming Urban Jungles  

The built environment—including building operations, as well as building materials and construction—generates roughly 40% of the world’s CO2 emissions. 

The Canadian government has set a goal that all new buildings will be built to net-zero ready energy standards by 2030, meaning they are designed to produce as much clean energy as they consume, once renewable energy components—like solar panels—are installed. Net-zero energy buildings are expected to be at least 80% more energy efficient than those being constructed today. 

To meet that objective, researchers, technology developers and construction companies are coming together to develop new technologies and techniques that will make the buildings of tomorrow possible. 

Hear from the innovators and thought leaders who are shaping the future of community life, functionally, economically and culturally as part of the Taming Urban Jungles track at Inventures 2022.


Ben Hildebrant is a principal investigator with the Green Building Technologies Access Centre at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT). Ben received an Architectural Technologies diploma from SAIT in 2013 with a focus in Building Development Technologies and has worked for several years as a building science technologist. 

During that time, he diagnosed and oversaw the repair of building envelope issues in single and multi-family buildings. He has also served as a building envelope consultant on multiple multi-family and commercial construction projects in Calgary and Fort McMurray. Ben’s mechanical and troubleshooting strengths stem from his background as an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer. 

Today, Ben’s focus with Green Building Technologies at SAIT is to oversee building and material science related research. He also supports the development of educational curriculum to help increase the adoption of green, high performance building design and construction concepts. 

Shift by Alberta Innovates focuses on the people, businesses and organizations that are contributing to Alberta's strong tech ecosystem.