CN’s Carbon Reduction Project for Business
The Prince George Chamber of Commerce along with CN, the Prince George Air Improvement Roundtable, and the University of Northern BC were excited to wrap up this year’s “Carbon Footprint Reduction in the Prince George Business Community” Project. We celebrated on National Tree Day, 21 September, at Duchess Community Park. We publicly recognized the impact that this project has made on our community by dedicating a new pine tree and new park bench. We hope that locals will continue to enjoy this amazing park surrounded by developing trees that enhance our air quality.
During the event, the following speakers addressed guests:
- Chamber of Commerce President, Cindi Pohl
- City of Prince George Mayor, Lyn Hall
- CN Regional Manager Environment, David Brogliatto
- UNBC President and Vice Chancellor, Dr. Daniel Weeks
- PGAIR Board Member, Sherry McIntyre
Media coverage was exceptional as we also renamed this project to “CN’s Carbon Reduction Project for Business” in light of CN’s announcement for its nearly $100,000 commitment of support to a three-year program extension until 2019.
We look forward, within the next few months, to recruiting voluntary businesses to be “live” carbon footprint analyses case studies for UNBC’s Carbon Management class in January 2017.
The following represents a sample of the media coverage of our event:
Chamber of Commerce and UNBC Project Continues to Improve Air Quality
As post-secondary students across the province wrap up their academic year this month, some UNBC students aren’t taking exams. Instead, students in UNBC’s “Carbon Management: Sustainable Business in a Carbon-Constrained World” are getting schooled in the business of real life. Students from this particular class are busy putting the final touches on their internationally recognized carbon footprint analysis for participating local businesses. Benchmark Automotive, Central BC Railway and Forestry Museum, Joey’s Only, Nancy O’s, Shiraz Café and Restaurant, Staples, Two Rivers Gallery, and Zaffron Cuisine received formal live presentations from the students on their findings.
This partnership between the Prince George Chamber of Commerce and the University of Northern British Columbia continues to help local businesses better understand their carbon footprint and how they can reduce them. The primary sponsor is CN, one of the largest employers in the Prince George area.
Since 2014 the Chamber has encouraged businesses to become more energy efficient, help improve local air quality, increase recycling, and reduce waste. This is the second year that a UNBC class has been facilitated through the Chamber to directly assist local companies and organizations to reduce their carbon footprint. These Chamber businesses will receive analyses of their carbon emission sources at no cost to them. These reports will also include recommendations on how to reduce emissions, consumption rates and energy expenses.
Another project sponsor is UNBC’s Undergraduate Experiential Service Learning (UESL) where funding support is provided from unrestricted donations to UNBC. The students truly benefit from this project as they learn from real and current case studies with the voluntary businesses. This partnership is unique in that it is typically quite rare for university students to directly interact with local businesses as part of coursework. But interactions resulting from this particular program are a winning scenario for the businesses and students as both parties learn during this collaborative process.
Kyrke Gaudreau, the course instructor, enjoys teaching the course as it promotes sustainable business in Prince George and provides an opportunity for UNBC’s Green Centre to become a hub for community-based teaching and research. “The businesses, along with the students, learn how to prepare for the challenges and opportunities presented by climate change,” he said. “The class also develops a professional skill, climate footprint analyses, which will be increasingly in demand as the world starts to tackle climate change.”
UNBC and the Chamber of Commerce look forward to this continuing partnership as it furthers local education and the practicality of carbon reduction in the Prince George community. The Chamber will have a summer student intern assist these participating local businesses to implement the carbon footprint analysis recommendations and further reduce their reliance on fossil fuels.
Kyrke Gaudreau (UNBC, Course Instructor), Mojegan Sadeghian (Zaffron Cuisine, Owner/Manager), Lindsey Wells (UNBC, Student) and Justin Serpa (UNBC, Student)
CKPG Coverage of the Carbon Management Course
UNBC’s Carbon Management Class tackles local carbon footprints
Back row: Patricio Guardado, Megan Wall, Allison Haley, Rita Mehmi, Lindsey Wells
Front row: Arctica Cunningham, Melanie Anderson, Josie the Dog (6ixsigma), Kyrke Gaudreau (Course Instructor), Barbara Otter (Project Coordinator), Justin Serpa
This initial “Meet and Greet” session took place at the new HUBSPACE in downtown Prince George. We had a great turnout as volunteer businesses had the opportunity to meet several eager UNBC students and program staff. Special thanks to our primary funder, CN.
The Chamber is pleased to announce that eight local businesses have opened their doors to students enrolled in the UNBC Carbon Management class. Their commitment to the students provides access to the businesses’ premises, utility bills, employee commute information, and paper usage data. The data collected is considered confidential and is not available outside of the class. Without these businesses, the students would not have “live” case studies and real-life experience with carbon footprint analyses. Participating businesses receive a FREE carbon footprint analysis, which meets international standards, along with suggestions on how to reduce or even neutralize their environmental impact.
A special “thank you” goes out to each of the voluntary Chamber member businesses:
Benchmark Automotive Services Inc.
Central BC Railway and Forestry Museum
Shiraz Cafe and Restaurant
Two Rivers Gallery
Many of the students expenses are kindly paid for by the University of Northern British Columbia.
Carbon Reduction Project Continues in 2016
We look forward to continuing our project work with committed businesses and a new class of eager students in 2016. Together, both groups will assist each other in learning more about reducing reliance on fossil fuel usage.
UNBC’s 2016 “carbon Management: Sustainable business in a Carbon-Constrained World” class
Back row: Arctica Cunningham, Justin Sapra, Lindsey Wells, Megan Wall, Allison Haley
Front row: Patricio Salaverria, Rita Mehmi and Kyrke Gaudreau (Instructor)
Missing: Melanie Anderson
After a successful year of program involvement in 2015, our Chamber has received continued funding from CN, allowing us to re-commit our support to this innovative project. Local businesses provide easily accessible data to UNBC’s Carbon Management class. In return, class participants provide businesses with an internationally recognized carbon footprint analysis at no charge, along with suggestions on how to reduce, or even neutralize, their environmental impact. The businesses, should they choose to follow the class’ suggestions, often further lower their energy costs as they reduce their reliance on fossil fuels.
If your business is interested in volunteering please contact,
Project Coordinator, Barbara Otter
Reduce Your Business Energy Costs
Receive a FREE Carbon Footprint Analysis!
The Chamber has reunited with UNBC’s Carbon Management course during the Winter 2016 term.
– Save energy
– Reduce fossil fuels use
– Increase marketability
– Help students
We are offering Chamber members the exclusive opportunity to save money and reduce operational waste through our Carbon Footprint Reduction Project.
This is how it works. In early 2016, 15 local businesses will benefit from the class project work of UNBC’s Carbon Management Course. Each business is asked to provide students access to general data such as energy usage, staff commute, and paper usage. In return, each participating business is provided with a full, internationally recognized carbon footprint analysis at no cost. Little effort is needed by the businesses as the students make the process easy and FREE.
Participating businesses will receive recommendations for emission reductions that will often show a cost savings over a defined payback period. Some businesses may choose to become carbon neutral. Reduction initiatives can be the first step for any business as it builds sustainable practices, conserves energy, increases green marketing avenues and saves money on its operations.
What will your business get out of volunteering?
Obtain a FREE carbon footprint analysis, at internationally recognized standards, of your business.
Receive customized information on how to reduce operational costs as defined over a payback period.
Gain business specific recommendations for emission reductions through reducing reliance on fossil fuels.
Provide live case study material for the students. This material is considered CONFIDENTIAL and is held within the class.
What will you be asked to do?
Attend an optional casual Meet and Greet (1-2 hours), in February, to get to know the students, instructor and further understand the project.
Meet with the students in February or March (1-3 hours) and provide for them:
· A brief operational tour (if possible).
· Information to create a greenhouse gas inventory, such as: utility bills, paper
usage, and employee commuting.
Attend an optional student presentation (1 hour) in April, specific to your business.
Enjoy working with eager young minds.
What is the role of the Chamber?
Facilitate and expedite businesses’ interactions with the class.
A carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases (GHGs) produced directly and indirectly to support human activities. They are produced through fossil fuel combustion, deforestation, agricultural practices, electricity generation, and commercial/residential activities.
This means they will have a net zero carbon footprint.
A carbon offset is the reduction in GHG emissions created by one party, which can be purchased and used to balance the emissions of another party.
GHGs are gases that trap heat in the atmosphere. All GHGs are standardized using a carbon dioxide equivalence factor (CO2e). There summation is referred to as total carbon footprint.
Primary Funding Continues From:
Thank you for your interest in the Carbon Reduction Project. For further information please contact:
Barbara Otter, Project Coordinator
firstname.lastname@example.org | 250-562-2454