CleanBC Government Buildings Program supports green economy, creates jobs

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Jinny Sims

BURNABY: The new CleanBC Government Buildings Program aims to make government facilities greener and smarter, and requires an increased need for skilled workers to help the Province meet this goal.

“We unveiled the program yesterday in Prince George and today we are at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) to see the training that our workforce is going to need to put the CleanBC Government Buildings Program into action,” said Jinny Sims, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “Government’s overall goal is to cut emissions by 80% by 2050. This program will help us get there.”

Government buildings will be retrofitted, with new heating systems, insulation and other measures to make them more energy efficient and cut greenhouse gas emissions. The B.C. government is aiming to have all new government facilities using 100% clean energy starting in 2022.

“Students at BCIT are the next generation of leaders who have the passion and ability to use the latest technology to retrofit government buildings, and make private sector construction projects cleaner and greener,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education. “Its going to take 21st-century industry-ready professionals to make this happen, and I am proud of the contributions our post-secondary institutions are making to building the best B.C.”

Under the program, the Province is taking action to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions at government facilities. An area of focus is to retrofit older buildings with more efficient heating and cooling systems and constructing better buildings that will make them energy neutral – producing as much energy as they consume.

CleanBC is a pathway to a more prosperous, balanced and sustainable future. CleanBC was developed in collaboration with the BC Green Party caucus and supports the commitment in the Confidence and Supply Agreement to implement climate action to meet B.C.’s emission targets.

Quick Facts:

* The CleanBC Government Buildings Program targets about 1,000 government buildings, which account for about 8% of total provincial public-sector emissions.

* By 2021, all new government facilities will include electric vehicle charging stations. For existing buildings, charging stations will be installed where there is demand.

* Energy retrofits generally result in a minimum of 25% energy savings. Major energy retrofits, which also include building-envelope improvements, could deliver savings of more than 40%.

* By 2032, all new buildings in B.C. will be net-zero-energy ready. By 2050, the goal is to reduce emissions in core provincial buildings by 80% when compared to 2010 levels.

* CleanBC Efficiency Rebates are available for people and businesses to improve their homes and buildings by installing new heating and cooling systems, upgrade major appliances, improve insulation and complete BC Hydro energy-saving evaluations.