(Saint John, NB) The City of Saint John has won a 2011 Premier’s Award for Energy Efficiency. Premier David Alward honoured award recipients at the third annual Premier’s Awards for Energy Efficiency held in Fredericton The awards showcased some of the best practices in the province.
The City won in the Energy Efficiency Champion, commercial sector category. That award recognizes an individual or group within the commercial and institutional sector who advocates energy efficiency and displays leadership through activities such as planning, auditing, facility and energy management. The awards were developed by Efficiency NB to recognize companies, organizations and individuals for their innovation and achievement in the field of energy efficiency.
The City has been quietly leading the way in municipal energy efficiency efforts since 1997, when it adopted the Municipal Energy Efficiency Program (MEEP) as its environmental and fiscal code -- the first municipality to do so in the country.
“The City leads by example and exemplifies a model program that other municipalities and government departments can emulate,” said Carman Travis of MCW Maricor, the engineering and energy consulting firm that nominated the City for the award. “The City represents the industry as an advocate of energy efficiency and best practices, and is always willing to share their experiences and success stories with organizations looking to tackle the challenge of effectively managing energy”.
The City of Saint John adopted a Municipal Energy Efficiency Program (MEEP) in 1996, pre-empting Kyoto. The program main objective of the program is to reduce energy consumption of municipal operations by 25% by 2011. As of 2007, the City’s adopted MEEP procedures have resulted in current annual savings of $1.24 million dollars, 10 million kwh, 5,792 tonnes CO2 and 320,000 litres of fuel from 1996 to 2007. Cumulative savings from 1996 to 2007 total $5.1 million dollars. In 2009, the City further reduced its energy cost by $1.4 million dollars and cut 7,000 tonnes of carbon emissions.
MEEP projects encompass every aspect of city operations and include retrofits to municipal buildings, fire stations, and recreational facilities, lighting upgrades for street lights and parking lots, as well as upgrades to waste water operations. The City has also mandated high energy efficiency standards for all new construction projects.
The City has received national recognition for its program. The City received the 2008 Federation of Canada Municipalities, CH2M HLLL Sustainable Community Award. In 2010, the City’s Sustainable Energy Management Team received the Conservation Council’s Milton F. Gregg Conservation Award.
“We are committed to having Saint John lead the nation as a sustainable community,” said Mayor Ivan Court. “It is rewarding to have the Premier, Efficiency NB and the private sector recognize our efforts.”