Prince George, September 25, 2019 – Fifty free carbon footprint analyses have been completed, thanks to the Chamber Carbon Action Plan (C2AP) and its primary funder CN. Launched in 2015, this project facilitates local business in becoming carbon neutral or carbon reduced by working with The University of Northern British Columbia students.
Northern Lights Estate Winery, Prince George Driving for Life Academy, and Timberline Footfitters continue to utilize C2AP to become carbon neutral. 46 businesses volunteered representing sectors as: manufacturing, retail, wholesale, restaurant, health care, non-profit, charity, First Nations, consulting, service, and agriculture. The variety of participants is key to the project as fossil fuel reliance affects all business.
C2AP also credits its success to the valued support of many funders and partners. “The Chamber’s Carbon Reduction Program supports a sustainable future and is therefore a natural extension of CN’s own sustainability initiatives and Action Plan. By supporting this program, CN assists local businesses in reducing energy usage, emissions and waste while promoting environmental stewardship. CN is proud to collaborate with the Prince George Chamber of Commerce for an environmentally sustainable future,” said Jason Maidment, Assistant Superintendent, Transportation for CN.
“The funding partnership with CN, and program support from UNBC, has enabled the Prince George Chamber of Commerce to work with our member businesses in finding opportunities for them to become environmental champions – mitigating their carbon footprints and, in some instances, reducing their overall operating expenses over the long term,” said Todd Corrigall, CEO for the Prince George Chamber of Commerce. “These businesses and functions are leaders in our community, paving the way for additional businesses to come on-board with the program and see the returns and impacts it garners.”
Carbon footprint analyses are created by UNBC students as per internationally recognized standards and facilitated by the Prince George Chamber of Commerce. C2AP recognizes the capacity for business to reduce greenhouse gas emissions often through routine operational practices.
“As we grapple with global climate change, programs such as the Chamber Carbon Action Plan demonstrate our ability to lead the response locally,” says UNBC President Dr. Daniel Weeks. “It is gratifying to see UNBC students connect the knowledge they gain in the classroom with real-world applications for local business who are looking to reduce their carbon footprint or become carbon neutral.”
Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions returned to sponsor a full-time intern. “PICS shares a global vision of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by mid-century alongside all communities adapting to a changing climate,” according to Michelle Connolly the Program Manager for PICS.
“Communities, business and individuals all have a role to play in limiting emissions and we’re proud that PICS Intern Hannah Renaud supported local businesses in reducing theirs. The Internship program will continue to create capacity among young people to address emissions in
a material way.”
Bob Gammer, Northern Community Relations Manager for BC Hydro, is pleased with BC Hydro’s new role as project sponsor of the four trees planted today in Duchess Park. Three of the trees are dedicated to the businesses that became carbon neutral in 2018 and the fourth is dedicated to C2AP’s future growth. “Trees don’t just make a community more sustainable, they make them healthier and more beautiful – they are carbon capture at work. Our Community ReGreening Program helps fund urban tree planting that’s related to visual aesthetics and environmental enhancements. Since the launch of the Community ReGreening program in 1999, BC Hydro has paid for more than 300,000 trees.”
The project appreciates the voluntary efforts in 2019 of 13 Chamber members: BC Northern Real Estate Board, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Canadian Vocational Training Centre, Norcan Consulting, North Edge Ice Sports, Northern Lights Estate Winery, Prince George Driving For Life Academy Ltd., TDB Consultants Inc., Team Powerhouse Realty, Thrifty Friends Society, Timberline Footfitters, Vanway Kitchen + Bath, and Workforce Development Consulting Services of Northern BC.
Lyn Hall, Mayor for the City of Prince George continues to support local initiatives that benefit the community, “On behalf of Council, I would like to congratulate the Prince George Chamber of Commerce, UNBC, and each of the participating businesses and students for the success of the Chamber Carbon Action Plan. Encouraging businesses to investigate and reduce their carbon footprint while providing meaningful opportunities for students to learn from and engage with the business community benefits Prince George’s environment and economy and provides an educated workforce. Thank you to the Chamber and all of the partners and participants for this fantastic local program.”
UNBC’s Carbon and Energy Management course provides the skills needed to do the analyses and the businesses provide the real life data for the students to work with. Student customize each businesses’ analyses and include sector comparisons, recommendations to reduce operational expenses, and information on becoming carbon neutral. The Chamber continues to expedite the process, expand the project and support all participants.
The Chamber will recognize such a continued success by dedicating trees at Duchess Community Park as part of the National Tree Day Celebration on Wednesday, September 25 at 10 a.m.
More information is available on this project at: https://bit.ly/2J0wne3
Peter James, UNBC – Communications Officer 250-960-5420 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Barbara Otter, Prince George Chamber of Commerce – Grants Administrator 250-562-2454 x2006 | email@example.com
Jonathan Abecassis, CN – Senior Advisor, Media Relations and Public Affairs 514-755-7956 | Jonathan.Abecassis@cn.ca