Central Okanagan School District to save energy and money with new Terasen Gas geoexchange system
SURREY, BC, Oct. 12 /CNW/ - Terasen Gas and School District 23 Central Okanagan, have signed a deal to retrofit and operate a $650,000 geoexchange system, expected to be operational in 2010, at Helen Gorman Elementary School in West Kelowna. The geoexchange system will help the school manage its energy costs and reduce its carbon footprint.
"As one of the first utility companies in Canada to include alternative energy solutions as part of its regulated energy service offerings, our deal with the Central Okanagan School District will help them use energy efficiently and benefit the environment," said Doug Stout, Vice President, Energy Solutions and External Relations at Terasen Gas and FortisBC.
Once the geoexchange system is operational, Terasen Gas estimates that Helen Gorman Elementary School will save approximately 84 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and 1,400 gigajoules of net energy per year. The geoexchange system will also enable Terasen Gas to determine how geoexchange systems can be used in other school districts to reduce schools' energy usage and GHGs.
"This upgrade and the operational savings it brings will result in more money being directed to the classroom while providing a more comfortable and sustainable learning space," said Ben Stewart, MLA for Westside-Kelowna on behalf of Education Minister Margaret MacDiarmid. "This project between the Province, the Central Okanagan School District and Terasen Gas is a model for the kind of partnership needed to aggressively pursue critical environmental goals."
Terasen Gas directly invested $225,000 into the retrofit and contributed an additional $100,000 through an Energy Efficiency and Conservation incentive to help fund the overall cost of the project, with the school district funding the balance.
"We are excited about this innovative and sustainable energy project and look forward to making significant progress in reducing our carbon footprint," said Hugh Gloster, Central Okanagan School District Superintendant. "With Helen Gorman Elementary School as an example, we hope many other schools will be encouraged to follow our lead to become as energy efficient as possible."
Geoexchange systems are one of Terasen Gas' principal alternative energy solutions that can be implemented in both new construction and retrofits. They transport heat from where it is generated to where it is needed by capturing heat from the earth, water or waste heat sources. Geoexchange systems also provide many benefits for developers, building owners and end-users, ranging from indoor comfort, to protecting the environment, to stable rates which provide financial certainty regarding the price of energy.
For more information on Terasen Gas' integrated energy solutions, please visit terasengas.com.
Terasen Gas is mainly composed of the operations of Terasen Gas Inc. and Terasen Gas (Vancouver Island) Inc., both indirect wholly owned subsidiaries of Fortis Inc. Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada, serves approximately 2,100,000 gas and electric customers and has total assets exceeding $12 billion. Its regulated holdings include Terasen Gas and electric utilities in five Canadian provinces and three Caribbean countries. Fortis Inc. owns non-regulated hydroelectric generation assets across Canada and in Belize and upper New York State. It also owns hotels and commercial real estate in Canada. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional information can be accessed at www.fortisinc.com or www.sedar.com
For further information:
Public Affairs Bureau
Ministry of Education