Monday, July 15, 2019

Pilot program to help residential strata corporations reduce energy usage.

While a significant amount of greenhouse gas emissions is generated due to transportation, energy usage within residential buildings also generates a significant amount of greenhouse gas emissions in BC. There have been government programs to help support retrofitting single-family housing and rental buildings to reduce energy usage, but these types of programs have been harder to come by and access for strata residential buildings. This is significant as over 70% of our housing stock in Metro Vancouver is not single-family housing.

An example of a strata building. Select image to enlarge.

For strata corporations, it can be harder to implement energy reduction retrofits due to the nature of strata governance which normally includes volunteer strata councils, limited funding, and complexities around aligning individual owners who may have competing interests.

To help support residential strata corporations, the Metro Vancouver Regional District launched a Strata Energy Advisor pilot program. The goal of the pilot program was to see if there was an interest in a program to help residential strata corporations get energy assessments to support completing building upgrades to reduce energy usage.

There was a desire for such as program as the original pilot target of 70 qualified building was met 14 weeks earlier than planned. The pilot program was expanded to include 88 qualified buildings. A total of 118 energy-saving project were created as a result of this pilot. 64 of these projects are in progress, and 18 projects have been completed to date.

Some municipalities also provided grants to help support strata corporations complete projects. These municipalities included Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey, New Westminster, the City of North Vancouver, and UBC.

In total, the pilot project was delivered for $759,000. Work will now begin to develop a report to “summarize the projects implemented to date, the estimated greenhouse gas reductions, cost effectiveness of the program, a survey of the participants and other measure of the impact of the program.” It will also include next steps. This could be an ideal program for the provincial or federal governments to support to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the impacts of climate change.

More information about the Strata Energy Advisor pilot can be found on a Metro Vancouver website.

No comments: