Energy-conscious leaders, companies win Power Smart Awards

Energy conservation leaders, both in the private sector and in government, were among the winners of BC Hydro's 2008 Power Smart Excellence Awards announced Thursday at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel in Vancouver.

BC Hydro CEO Bob Elton and Premier Gordon Campbell presented the awards to 18 residential, commercial and industrial organizations from across the province. The winners included three individuals in a new award category, Workplace Conservation Leadership.

Catalyst Paper's Greg Olynyk, a trainer in the Powell River-based company's information technology department, was recognized as an outstanding advocate for reducing power consumption at Catalyst's Elk Falls Division.

City of Victoria's Soki Kaur is a city-wide champion for energy conservation. A customer service co-ordinator in the city's engineering department, Kaur led Victoria's participation in BC Hydro's Turn It Off Challenge in 2007.

Vancouver Coastal Health Authority's David Procter spearheaded an energy awareness campaign that used the results of a staff survey to shape a communications program aimed at reaching 24,000 employees across the organization.

Another new award, the Larry Bell Award for advancing energy conservation within B.C., went to Andrew Pape-Salmon, acting director of energy efficiency with the B.C. Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources. Pape-Salmon's achievements over the past year include working with utilities, the building sector and others to instill the conservation ethic throughout B.C. society.

"An increasing number of B.C. companies – and the inspiring leaders within them – are showing a concerted effort and deep commitment to reducing their electricity consumption," said BC Hydro CEO Bob Elton. "As we've seen by the innovation of these organizations and businesses, the benefits go beyond cost savings. Their leadership is making a difference in helping British Columbia meet 50 per cent of future energy needs through conservation."

Now in its sixth year, BC Hydro's annual Power Smart Excellence Awards recognize customers and partners who are leading the way in implementing Power Smart solutions in the design, construction and renovation of buildings, applying innovative energy-efficient process improvements, or providing leadership in environmentally-responsible practices and community involvement.

"The initiatives and projects by the recipients and nominees for the 2008 Power Smart Excellence Awards demonstrate the power of conservation in meeting British Columbia's energy needs," said Premier Gordon Campbell, who was on hand to present awards. "Conservation is one of the best and most cost-effective ways to reach our BC Energy Plan goals, and at the same time address the global challenge of climate change."

Other award winners were:

Limona Construction Ltd. (Builder/Developer of the Year), a builder of high-quality energy-efficient homes with two Power Smart single-family developments on Vancouver Island.

Provincial Health Services Authority (Energy Champion), responsible for nearly half of the B.C. health sector's 12 gigawatt hours of electricity savings over the last several years.

Catalyst Paper – Crofton Division (Excellence in Energy Management), which reduced costs at its five pulp and paper mills in B.C. by focusing on electricity conservation.

Kwantlen University College (Excellence in Energy Management), which surpassed its previous energy reduction targets and last year set a new target of 45 per cent by 2010 from 2000 levels.

Overwaitea Food Group (Excellence in Energy Management), which established numerous energy management best practices over the past year.

Discovery Parks Trust (Innovation in Sustainable Building Design), which participated in BC Hydro's High Performance Building Program design process while planning a new commercial building

Conglom Inc. (Manufacturer of the Year), a manufacturer of energy-efficient lighting products.

Window and Door Manufacturers Association of BC (Marketing Partner of the Year), which advises provincial and federal government agencies on how to make energy-efficiency programs and standards succeed within the industry.

Provincial Health Services Authority (New Technology of the Year), which became the first organization in Canada to use light-emitting diodes (LED) rooftop lighting powered by wind turbines, and also installed LED outdoor streetlights.

Sears Canada Inc. (Outstanding Energy Efficiency Project), which found a solution in upgrading its heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.

Taseko Mines (Outstanding Energy Efficiency Project), which used two upgrades in its mill capacity expansion project at its Gibraltar mine to double system capacity and save nearly 38.5 gigawatt hours of electricity per year.

Aberdeen Poultry Ltd.of Salmon Arm (Product Incentive Program Achievement), which installed 210 cold cathode lights, a technology new to the B.C. poultry market – in two chicken barns through BC Hydro's Power Smart Product Incentive Program.

Midland Liquidators, (Product Incentive Program Achievement), which completed a major lighting retrofit through the Power Smart Product Incentive Program.

Trail Appliances (Retailer of the Year), which partnered with BC Hydro in the summer of 2007 to design the ENERGY STAR® Appliance Rebate Program, and then created a pilot promotion for Power Smart Month in October.