The City of Saint John has won a “Community Recognition Award” for its Municipal Energy Efficiency Program (MEEP), the first program of its kind in Canada.
The award was announced by Bruce Fitch, Minister of Environment and Local Government in December. The Village of Beresford also won an award. The award serves to recognize community programs and promote best practices and leadership in the municipal sector.
“Sustainable infrastructure has been identified as a priority of Common Council. This program ensures that our City facilities are built and run in an energy efficient manner,” said Mayor Mel Norton. “This results in tremendous benefits for the environment in significant financial savings.”
The MEEP was established in 1997 as Saint John’s environmental and fiscal code. Saint John was the first city in the country to establish such a program.
The City hired an engineer to develop, manage and implement the energy management program.
Energy efficiency is now ingrained in operations within the City itself. Efforts have been spread across all areas of operations and include retrofits to arenas, waste water treatment facilities, and street lights.
The program has been very successful in terms of reducing energy use and GHG reductions. It is estimated that the total annual energy savings as of 2011 is $1.8M with an annual reduction of 6,300 tonnes in GHG emissions.
The City has also been able to leverage the MEEP to obtain Green Municipal Funds through the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM). In total grants and loans, The City of Saint John has been awarded GMF funding to complete the Canada Games Aquatic Centre Energy Efficiency retrofit ($1.79M in GMF funding), the Saint John Transit Commission New Construction LEED Silver Transit and Operation
Centre ($4.4M in GMF funding), and LEED certified Police Headquarters ($11M in GMF funding).
Over 90 City facilities are covered under the MEEP. These include arenas, community centers, pumping stations and office buildings. The latest technology in heating, lighting, ventilation and air conditioning, HVAC, refrigeration, heat recovery and building envelope systems has been installed throughout City buildings.
The program has won a number of awards including: a Premier’s Award for Energy Efficiency, a Commercial Energy Efficiency Champion from Efficiency N, B a Milton F. Gregg Conservation Award from the Conservation Council of NB, and a M. Hill Sustainable Community Award from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities.
The program was also highlighted as part of the City’s Top 7 Intelligent Community of the Year application
More information about the Province of New Brunswick’s Community Recognition Awards.