District-owned facilities in Central Saanich could soon be seeing energy efficiency upgrades to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The Community, Protective Services and Facilities committee met on March 9 to discuss allocating $15,000 from the municipal Carbon Reserve Fund for energy efficiency building retrofits, fuel switching projects and solar hot water systems in order to demonstrate its continued commitment to reducing corporate and community greenhouse gas emissions.
Council agreed unanimously to approve the funds.
The District is a signatory to the B.C. Climate Action Charter and in 2007 voluntarily committed to working toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and to become carbon-neutral in its operations.
During the 2012-2016 financial plan deliberations, council supported the creation of a municipal Carbon Reserve Fund using funds received annually from the Carbon Tax Rebate.
Including the 2014 Carbon Tax Rebate, the balance of the District’s Carbon Reserve Fund is expected to be just under $30,000.
A Building Facilities Asset Management Plan (BF-LAMP) has also been in-progress, which included detailed assessments of 42 District-owned buildings, identifying repairs, maintenance and equipment replacement of each building over the next 20 years, some of which will reduce emissions and improve energy efficiency.
“We did focus on local projects for local buildings,” said Councillor Alicia Cormier. “We’re looking at municipal facilities that community groups are working with now.”
Such facilities could include The Centre for Active Living, the Central Saanich Lions’ hall, West Saanich School, and so on.
The BF-LAMP is expected to be completed this spring, the results of which would impact any potential work on municipally-owned buildings.
“We’re going to be making grants available to change some of the heating or lighting systems that might reduce emissions,” added Cormier, pointing to the efforts from Solar Colwood as one example the District could follow.