800 older apartment buildings in B.C. have received energy-efficient upgrades through FortisBC since 2015. (Tyler Olsen/Abbotsford News)

Saanich ranked third for participation in FortisBC energy-efficient upgrades program

800 older apartment buildings in B.C. have received upgrades since 2015

Cities across B.C. have seen promising levels of participation in FortisBC’s Rental Apartment Program, which encourages energy-efficient upgrades for older apartment buildings.

According to FortisBC, there are approximately 11,000 older apartment buildings in B.C. that provide residents with affordable housing. However, the costs for utilities and maintenance in the older buildings are high and the emissions from old equipment are harmful to the environment.

READ ALSO: Greta Thunberg hitches low-carbon ride across Atlantic

Danielle Wensink, director of conservation and energy management at FortisBC, noted that almost 80 per cent of these older apartment buildings in B.C. were built more than 35 years ago and therefore had lower efficiency standards to meet.

As upgrade costs can be a barrier, in 2015 FortisBC announced it’s rental program which sought to install energy-saving measures in at no cost to building owners. The program also supports owners in upgrading other aging building equipment. Since 2015, 800 buildings have been upgraded.

Saanich was ranked third in the province for participation after having 28 of its apartment buildings receive upgrades. Victoria saw 90 of its 900 apartment buildings participate in the program, Kelowna had 36 of 300 buildings sign up, and 275 of Vancouver’s 5,300 apartment buildings joined in.

“Building owners who work with us show a real commitment to keeping these buildings in the rental market and are reducing their energy costs by an average of 12 per cent per year,” said Nicole Brown, a FortisBC spokesperson. “They’re also making substantial emission and water reductions, which help achieve climate action goals.”

READ ALSO: Langford-based Hulitan Family Services wins $15,000 award

FortisBC is investing in energy efficient upgrades in an effort to reduce customers’ carbon emissions in B.C. by 30 per cent 2030.

“The results so far are substantial, and have proved very beneficial for participating owners, especially those who are investing in further upgrades,” said Wensink.

The upgrades done in the past four years have saved the equivalent of about 110 Olympic-sized swimming pools or running a garden hose non-stop for over 20 years.

The upgrades made in older apartment buildings could reduce carbon emissions in B.C. by about 200,000 tonnes per year, which FortisBC said is the equivalent of getting 43,000 cars off the road.


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

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

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

Just Posted

Langford cuts red tape, engages in random acts of kindness to uplift spirits

‘I Am Langford’ campaign promotes supporting local

Saanich bylaw sparks EV charging infrastructure requirements in new builds

All new developments to be EV-charger compatible starting Sept. 1

Summer program helps Greater Victoria teens sharpen writing skills

Registration for the program runs until Aug. 17

‘Someone knows something’: a look into Vancouver Island missing persons with interactive map

There are more than three dozen people listed as missing throughout Vancouver Island

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

QUIZ: Are you ready for a summer road trip?

How much do you really know about roads, motor vehicles and car culture? Take this quiz to find out.

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

B.C. Ferries increasing passenger capacity after COVID-19 restrictions

Transport Canada 50-per-cent limit being phased out, no current plans to provide masks

Shellfish industry get funds to clean up at Island sites and beyond

Businesses can apply to cover half of costs to clean up so-called ‘ghost gear’

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

Most Read