Tuesday, October 28, 2008

You Cannot Get a Charge In Langley - Just Yet

Back in July I blogged about this Township Council vote on the provision for electrical outlets for charging electric cars in new multi-family developments. Further, council requested that Housing & Social Development Minister Rich Coleman be asked to consider including this as part of a new Green Building Code that The matter was referred to staff to investigate. Last night, thanks to Councillor Jordan Bateman, I received the results of the staff query.

Firstly, staff discussed the possibility of enacting local bylaws that would require the outlets with the Building Policy Branch under the current BC Building Code, as the City of Vancouver has done. But it has been determined that "concurrent authority limitations of the current regulatory framework, precludes the enactment of such bylaws which would impose standards higher than those contained in the Building Code."

So why does Vancouver get to do it? Well, it appears that the City of Vancouver's independent charter "does not constrain it to the limitations pf provincial concurrent authority that are applicable to all other local governments in BC."

The news from Minister Rich Coleman's office is slightly more positive. He says:
"As you are aware, greening the BC Building Code is one piece of an extensive approach being taken by the Province of British Columbia to address greenhouse gas reductions and promote water and energy efficiency.

The province has been monitoring developments in sustainability technology such as electrical and plug-in hybrid cars and the infrastructure that may be required to charge these vehicles.

Electrical outlets for cars are not a current initiative under review but are an option that we will consider implementing in the future.

I appreciate the Township's interest and support for this initiative. We will continue to consult with local government, industry and the public as we proceed to greening the BC Building Code."
I still like Vancouver's independent charter better. Can we throw some tea in the Fraser River or withhold our berry crops from Metro Vancouver next season?

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