Pearkes arena’s new electric Zamboni will create fewer carbon emissions which aligns with Saanich’s sustainability goals. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Saanich swaps last propane-powered Zamboni for electric model

Pearkes arena’s all-electric ice resurfacing fleet to reduce carbon emissions by six tonnes

The Pearkes arena traded in its last propane-powered ice resurfacing machine for a greener model.

The arena’s more eco-friendly electric Zamboni-brand ice resurfacing machine hit the ice this week in Saanich.

The new Zamboni looks the same at the old ice resurfacers, requires similar maintenance and is operated in the same way, explained Pearkes arena manager Graham Thomson.

The only difference is that instead of gassing up, the machine contains a large battery that can be plugged into a wall-mounted charging block.

READ ALSO: Saanich adds to green rink resurfacing fleet at Pearkes

Staff can get through the majority of the day – about 15 ice cleans – on a single, overnight charge, but the Zamboni is typically plugged in for “short boost charges” between uses to extend the battery life.

The battery also makes the machine much quieter than the propane-powered models.

“You don’t get that ‘vroom’ when you start it,” Thomson said emulating a gas-power machine revving.

While the machine itself will age like the average car, the large, rechargeable battery inside has a five to ten-year life span, depending on how often it’s used, Thomson explained.

The arena also uses an electric ice-edger to clear the parts of the rink that the Zambonis can’t reach.

Will Pearson, an arena operator, steers the new electric Zamboni with ease. He noted that the machine isn’t the first eco-friendly upgrade the arena has seen. The District already owned one battery-powered ice resurfacing machine that is now about 10 years old.

All brands that make ice resurfacers have electric models. The tech isn’t new, but the “bones” have been upgraded, Thomson explained.

The initial price for the electric models is slightly higher, but the investment is returned over the course of the machine’s life because propane isn’t required, Thomson noted.

The distance driven by the Saanich’s ice resurfacing machines each year is approximately equal to the distance between Victoria and Halifax. This required a lot of propane and resulted in a lot of emissions.

READ ALSO: $2.6M ice slab replacement to begin at Pearkes this spring

Now that the propane-powered machines have been replaced by electric models, the arena’s greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced by almost six tonnes, Thomson said, noting that this is in line with the District’s carbon neutrality goals.

Pearkes arena is also home to tw0 REALice rink de-aerators – one installed in 2016 and another in 2019. The devices allow staff to resurface the rink with cool water – about 18 C – rather than hot water which is usually used in the resurfacing process.

Using cooler water saves on energy and reduces greenhouse gas emissions, Pearson explained.

For now, arena staff aren’t expecting any further green upgrades as the focus has shifted to the upcoming ice slab replacement set to begin on the Gold rink in the spring.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of SaanichEnvironment

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Pearkes arena’s new electric Zamboni will create fewer carbon emissions which aligns with Saanich’s sustainability goals. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Just Posted

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

The street value of the more than one-and-a-quarter kilograms of cocaine seized by VicPD officers was over $150,000. (Courtesy of VicPD)
Victoria police seize fentanyl, more than $150,000-worth of cocaine

Charges laid against two Victoria men in months-long investigation

Investigators seized sophisticated equipment including credit card embossers, credit card PIN machines, heavy duty printers and computers used to create fraudulent cards. (West Shore RCMP handout)
West Shore RCMP arrest two, find 1,000 pieces of stolen ID in Langford

Investigation began after fraudulent bank draft used to buy vehicle in Colwood

Police continue to investigate a break-and-enter in this Sidney jewelry store in the 2500-block of Beacon Avenue. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Thieves hit Sidney jewelry store

Sidney/North Saanich RCMP says incident is not part of a larger trend

Items seized over four days of targeted vehicle checks Nanaimo and Victoria by members of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. (CFSEU-BC photo)
Gang enforcement team seizes drugs and weapons in Victoria and Nanaimo

Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit of B.C. checked 33 vehicles over four days

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry arrives for briefing on the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020 (B.C. government)
B.C. records 217 more COVID-19 cases, mask use urged

Infection spike continues, 21 senior facilities affected

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Oct. 27

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Cowichan Search and Rescue set up near the Silver Bridge in Duncan on Wednesday morning, Oct. 28, 2020 to rescue a dog from the Cowichan River. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Search and Rescue save dog from icy Cowichan River

Search and Rescue’s swiftwater team was called in

Premier-elect John Horgan and cabinet ministers are sworn in for the first time at Government House in Victoria, July 18, 2017. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Pandemic payments have to wait for B.C. vote count, swearing-in

Small businesses advised to apply even if they don’t qualify

The Calgary Zoo is aiding in recovery efforts for the Vancouver Island marmot, an endangered species. Pictured here, a marmot at Mount Washington. (Black Press file)
Despite challenges, 2020 good year for Vancouver Island marmot population

In 2019, the foundation counted 60 pups; this year, it reached 46

A raccoon paid a visit to a Toronto Tim Hortons on Oct. 22, 2020. (shecallsmedrew/Twitter)
Who are you calling a trash panda? Raccoon takes a shift at Toronto Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons said animal control was called as soon they saw the surprise visitor

The duffel bags were found to contain 84 pounds of cocaine, valued at approximately $1.2 million and 198 pounds of methamphetamine, valued at approximately $960,000. Photo courtesy U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
2 men accused of fleeing border agents near U.S.-B.C. border with $2M in drugs

Cocaine and methamphetamine seized by U.S. law enforcement in remote Idaho area near Canadian border

FILE – The Queen of Alberni ferry leaves the Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal in Delta bound for Vancouver Island, Sunday, July 29, 2007. (CP PHOTO/Richard Lam) CANADA
Mechanical failure leaves nearly 200 passengers stranded on BC Ferries ship for hours

A tug arrived after dark to safely nudge the vessel into a berth so travellers could finally disembark

Ridge Meadows RCMP (Black Press)
Maple Ridge X-ray tech convicted of sexual assault dating back 30 years

Allen James Brooks is expected to be sentenced in January 2021

Most Read