Community Energy Efficiency & Emissions Reduction
Energy-efficient programs, technologies and designs require less energy to provide the same services as conventional systems. Improving energy efficiency reduces demand, which can directly lower consumer energy bills, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and defer the need to invest in new energy supplies.
Local Government Planning & Land Use
Land use can influence energy use and emissions. Greater energy efficiency and emissions reduction can be achieved through long-term planning that focuses on land use that is compact, complete, connected and centered. This approach can yield significant infrastructure savings and reduce the negative impacts of high energy consumption. It can also result in more efficient transportation corridors and increased green spaces, reducing emissions and increasing carbon sink. These outcomes can be achieved through regional growth strategies and official community plans.
Other planning tools that can help local governments reduce energy and emissions in an integrated way include:
- Integrated community sustainability plans (PDF)
- Community energy and emissions plans (PDF)
- Energy efficiency and conservation plans
- Greenhouse gas reduction plans
- Climate action plans
Energy Efficiency Standards & Regulation
The Energy Efficiency Act and Energy Efficiency Standards Regulation set energy performance standards for devices that use, control or affect the use of energy, such as:
- Household appliances (washers, fridges)
- Heating systems (furnaces, boilers, heat pumps)
- Cooling systems (air conditioners, heat pumps)
- Lighting (ballasts and fluorescent bulbs)
- Some industrial equipment (motors and transformers)
Local governments can access sources of funding to support the planning and development of energy efficient infrastructure.
- The Community Energy Leadership Program supports local government and First Nations investments in energy efficiency and clean energy project.
- The federal Office of Energy Efficiency provides funding and resources to help communities plan for energy efficiency.
- Local governments undertaking community energy and emissions reduction plans or studies related to the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions are eligible to receive an infrastructure planning grant.
Capital grant programs provide funding for projects that improve the energy efficiency of buildings and facilities owned by local government.
Energy Efficiency Certification Programs
Energy efficiency achievements can be recognized through certification programs.
- Canada Green Building Council LEED: The leadership in energy and environmental design certification distinguishes new building or major renovations that are meeting high performance standards in environmental responsibility and energy efficiency.
- Building Owners and Managers Association of BC: The building environmental standards (BOMA BEST) program is a national environmental recognition and certification program for existing buildings.