News Release

Customers invited to peek into efficiency in 'condos' downtown

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VANCOUVER – A new BC Hydro campaign is reminding British Columbians that "waste is ridiculous."

For Power Smart Month, BC Hydro has launched an integrated campaign consisting of increased rebates and incentives for the purchase of energy-efficient products, along with new television commercials, community events and online marketing to promote energy efficiency and draw attention to how electricity is currently wasted.

As a part of that campaign, BC Hydro is taking living in a fishbowl to a whole new level by offering a window into people's energy habits. From October 5 to October 8, actors will live in temporary three-by-six-metre living spaces on the corner of Granville and Georgia to showcase how – and how not – to live and work in an energy-efficient manner.

The Power Smart cube condos feature glass walls allowing commuters and shoppers to look into one cube to learn how to live and work efficiently, while the second cube shows what not to do.

"To kick off Power Smart Month this October, we wanted to make energy efficiency highly visible and get the attention of people on their way to and from work and shopping," said Lisa Coltart, BC Hydro's executive director of Power Smart and Customer Care. "Efficient living and working boils down to being aware of how you consume electricity and the simple behavioural changes you can make.

"This display will demonstrate that even the smallest changes can make a substantial difference if they are practised by everyone across the province in their homes and offices."

Each day, the actors will embark on a typical day-to-day routine, demonstrating the simple behavioural changes that people can make in the workplace and at home. Displays affixed to the exterior of each cube condo will provide simulated consumption readings to allow the public to see the difference in the energy use when comparing energy-efficient living to inefficient and wasteful behaviour.

"The efficient cube condo is expected to use about 80 per cent less electricity, demonstrating that being Power Smart is not about sacrificing style and comfort to save energy. It is about using energy efficiently and wisely," said Coltart. "We have added touch screens and other interactive elements to allow passersby to learn more about the behaviours they see in the cubes and implement them when they get back to their homes and offices."

The cube condos are constructed of recycled shipping containers and are zero-waste spaces. All of the energy-efficient appliances are on loan from London Drugs and furnishings will be donated to a local charity.

The demonstration takes place from October 5 to 8 on the corner of Granville and Georgia in Vancouver, with actors inhabiting the cube daily from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. The cube condos will be open for entry to the public on October 8 from 12 to 2 p.m.

Each year, BC Hydro hosts Power Smart Month in October to educate customers on the benefits and ease of conservation at the time when energy consumption begins to increase for the colder months.

During October, BC Hydro provides special Power Smart offers to its residential and commercial customers. Every person that commits to reducing their energy consumption helps B.C. meet its goal of meeting 66 per cent of the province's new electricity needs through conservation by 2020.

Get more information about Power Smart Month on bchydro.com. To view the new BC Hydro commercials, visit BC Hydro's YouTube channel.

For more information, please contact:

Simi Heer
BC Hydro Media Relations
Phone: 604 623 3963
Mobile: 604 375 2746