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How our community team can help you save

BC Hydro's community team running a Powered by water trivia event
Discussions with our Community Team members can be fun as well as informative.

One-to-one conversations, plus a December 14 virtual trivia night

In just over a year with BC Hydro's Community Team, Mandy Sheppard has had conversations with customers across B.C., in places as far-flung as Haida Gwaii. Now she's in charge of planning events, and it's a long list.

"We try to get to as many as 300 events in a year," she says, her mind swimming with a frantic December schedule ranging from holiday lighting events to food bank visits. "We're at fall and spring home shows. We get energy saving kits to people at food banks. And we hold ESL events for those who are just learning to speak English."

Virtual events such as the December 14 trivia livestream event present the opportunity to reach a lot of customers in a fun atmosphere punctuated with prize giveaways. But when the Community Team gets out to events across the province, it's time for the one-to-one conversations that make the reps so popular.

"A lot of conversations recently are about electrification, and what that means," says Sheppard. "We talk about how the province is leaning more on hydroelectricity and away from non-renewable resources like gas. And we definitely get a lot of questions about BC Hydro's slogan 'powered by water'. People ask, 'What is being powered by water?"

That would be everything from homes to leaf blowers and electric cars, powered by hydroelectricity that harnesses the power of water. And increasingly, it's about air-source electric heat pumps that provide year-round home comfort – heat in the winter, cooling in the summer – from clean electricity rather than from carbon-intensive natural gas, propane or oil furnaces. With combined B.C. and federal heat pump rebates of up to $7,000 for those switching from electric baseboards, to up to $11,000 for those switching from fossil fuels, there's a lot of chatter out there.

"Some people want to know how heat pumps work, and whether it makes sense for them to make the switch," she says. "Others say 'I can't afford these big changes right now, like a heat pump or an electric vehicle.' So we focus on conservation tips, things that can be done at home to give you more control over your energy use. Even the small tips can really help."

Here's where the Community Team will be in the coming weeks. And it's a good idea to bookmark this story, as we'll update it with more event appearances on a regular basis.

December 2022 events

West Kelowna Light Up, Westbank Centre: December 2, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

PNE Winter Fair, Vancouver: December 14–23

Holiday trivia livestream, December 14, 5 p.m.