Practice Bulletins and Advisories
Be aware of these conditions as far as they affect your scope of practice:
The federal government recently released Policy Notification (PN)-48R1 (link below) to update the obligations for individuals involved in procurement with respect to the Official Languages Act.
Effective May 13, 2022, Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) may require submissions of engineering work products in both official languages - French and English - each being of equal quality and published at the same time.
This change to contracting professional services may place a professional engineer who knows only one of the two official languages in the position of being asked to stamp work they are unable to verify. The challenges with precise translation of technical work means the translator may need engineering competence and will need to collaborate with the responsible professional engineer.
Engineers Geoscientists Manitoba's Investigation Committee has considered this matter and determined the following with respect to translation of professional engineering or professional geoscientific documents:
- The primary design or work to be relied upon shall be identified and sealed by an engineer.
- The translation of that work shall be performed or verified by an engineer and stamped with the indication that it is sealed for the translation only.
- Documents that have been translated but not reviewed by an engineer shall:
- not have a seal on them,
- be clearly marked that:
- they have been translated from the original language and have not yet been reviewed by an engineer, and
- should not be relied upon.
Please send an e-mail to the address linked below with "Official Languages" in the subject line, to provide comments or feedback on these changes, of if you have more detailed questions for PWGSC.
The notice sent out by Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) on May 16, 2022, is provided below:
This notice is to inform you that Public Services and Procurement Canada has released an updated policy notification that contains requirements in respect of the Official Languages Act (OLA). The policy notification PN-48R1 (link below) came into force on May 13, 2022.
The federal government has the legal obligation to serve and communicate with the public in both official languages, pursuant to the OLA and all regulations thereunder including the Official Languages (Communications with and Services to the Public) Regulations (link below).
This updated policy notification includes new and updated provisions to ensure that all procurement notices and related tender documents posted on the Government's Electronic Tendering Service (GETS) are in both official languages. Tender documents include performance specifications, blueprints, architectural drawings, reports, graphics or other technical documentation that is included as part of a tender package.
While in the Atlantic Region, PSPC has been posting most procurement tenders in both official languages, this did not always include technical documentation such as those documents noted above. PSPC typically puts in place contracts with architectural and engineering consulting firms for the development of these types of technical documents. As PSPC moves towards implementation of the revised policy, the department will gradually be including in their contracts, standing offers and/or call-ups with architectural and engineering consulting firms a requirement to produce - in a timely manner when requested - the aforementioned tender documents in both official languages.
This notice is intended for awareness and to help prepare the architectural and engineering supplier community for this bilingual requirement that will soon begin to appear in PSPC Atlantic Region's architectural and engineering tenders.
For questions about this PN, including official languages requirements for posting notices and related tender documents, please send an e-mail to the address linked below with "Official Languages" in the subject line.
This Practice Bulletin has been jointly approved and published by Engineers Geoscientists Manitoba and the Manitoba Association of Architects. The Manitoba Energy Code for Buildings legally came into force in December 2014 and the two regulatory bodies have now set out minimum qualifications and professional practice for those who wish to provide services on projects which are located in Manitoba that involve whole Building Energy Modelling.
Scope and Purpose
This Practice Bulletin applies to architects and engineers who are providing, procuring, contributing, and/or coordinating Building Energy Modelling services on buildings of all types and sizes, regardless of the requirements for professional design and review within Building Codes. It covers minimum qualifications, professional practice, and compliance for projects that involve whole Building Energy Modelling.
Building Energy Modelling services must be provided by a Qualified Modeller. Qualified Modellers who provide modelling services must be either:
- an architect or engineer, or
- be under the direct supervision of an architect or engineer acting as an Energy Modelling Supervisor (EMS).
Building Energy Modelling and analysis is a multidisciplinary field that requires specific education, training and experience associated with architectural, mechanical, and electrical systems. Architects and engineers shall undertake and accept responsibility for professional assignments only when qualified by training or experience. Architects and engineers are required to adhere to their respective Codes of Ethics, which do not apply to Qualified Modellers who are not architects or engineers. However, if an architect or engineer acting as an EMS is relying on the work of a Qualified Modeller, reasonable steps must be taken by the EMS to familiarize the Qualified Modeller with the relevant ethical standards of the two professions.
Appropriate qualifications for modellers and their supervisors include core competencies such as theoretical and technical knowledge, building industry knowledge and experience, as well as professional development. To produce a representative model, these competencies must be effectively translated into practice. Both the Qualified Modeller and the EMS must understand the factors that may affect a model.
The core competencies of both the Qualified Modeller and the EMS includes:
- Education (Theoretical and Technical Knowledge)
- Materials knowledge
- Building physics
- Building systems
- Building modelling software
- Building Industry, Code and Standards
- Building code
- Construction practices
- Application of building science principles and building systems
- Professional Development
- Maintaining current knowledge in their area of practice
Although the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) is responsible for enforcing the requirements of the Building Code and any additional energy requirements, a professional's responsibility is the same regardless of the level of enforcement by the AHJ. If the Qualified Modeller is an architect or engineer, they must seal all Energy Modelling Reports. If the Qualified Modeller is not an architect or engineer an EMS must directly supervise and seal all Energy Modelling Reports. In the case of subcontracting, Qualified Modellers are to inform the EMS of all subcontracts and their scope. Subcontractors must be Qualified Modellers and are to be directly supervised by the EMS.
Building Energy Modelling Services must be provided by a Qualified Modeller who has the appropriate knowledge and experience. Qualified Modellers must be an engineer or architect, or directly supervised by an engineer or architect acting as the Energy Modelling Supervisor. All Energy Modelling Reports must be sealed by the Qualified Modeller, or by the Energy Modelling Supervisor.