New BC home insurance policy for a carbon neutral home

VANCOUVER, Feb. 28 /CNW/ - Two Canadian businesses, Offsetters and Optimum West Insurance Company, have just teamed up to bring a new product to the British Columbia marketplace: a home insurance policy to offset a household's annual greenhouse gas emissions.

Called the Optimum Green-Home Extension, this carbon neutral home insurance policy is a first for North America and is set to roll out to BC homeowners and renters March 1, 2011. 

The new product extends a conventional home insurance policy with up to $10,000 of additional coverage, for the cost difference to replace damaged items with more environmentally-friendly alternatives. This green home insurance extension also includes carbon offsets. Applicable to BC homeowner, condo and tenant insurance policies, brokers use tables developed by Offsetters to estimate the homeowner's annual household carbon footprint, which can then be offset. 

The policy will be available through insurance brokers who offer Optimum West Insurance, a company that recently earned the title of Climate Friendly Company by Offsetters by completing a greenhouse gas emissions footprint and offsetting key emissions activities.

"For Optimum West, we recognize we live in a changing world - the time has never been so right to roll out this type of policy," said Jeremy Green, regional vice president of Optimum West Insurance Company. "And while BC is a testing ground for this new, green home insurance policy, we certainly have our eyes set on other provinces in the near-future."

This announcement is the most recent partnership for the Vancouver-based Offsetters. In the past year, Offsetters was one of the official sponsors of the 2010 World Climate Summit, a sponsor to Globe 2010 (one of the world's largest and longest-running events dedicated to the business of the environment) and was named as the first official supplier of carbon offsets for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

"We're proud to partner with industry-leaders like Optimum West," said Kari Grist, senior vice president of marketing and sales for Offsetters. "With this product, Optimum West is demonstrating how organizations can help individuals find innovative ways to take responsibility for their carbon footprint and take action on climate change. Together, Offsetters, Optimum West and policy holders are working towards a low-carbon future."

About Offsetters

Offsetters is a leading carbon management solutions provider based in Vancouver, BC, helping individuals and companies understand, reduce and offset their climate impact. In 2009 Offsetters was selected as the first ever official supplier of carbon offsets in the history of the Olympic movement for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. In 2009 Offsetters was also selected by the Pacific Carbon Trust as the largest initial supplier of carbon offsets to the BC Crown Corporation. Founded in 2005, Offsetters invests in high-quality projects that achieve tangible reductions in greenhouse gas emissions that have happened with its involvement. For more information, visit www.offsetters.ca.

About Optimum West Insurance Company

The Optimum West Insurance Company is a wholly owned Canadian company, dedicated to serving the needs of Western Canada. We provide Property and Casualty Insurance to individuals as well as business and commerce throughout Western Canada, distributing our products through independent brokers. We identify ourselves with hometown values while enjoying the strength and stability of a Canadian based international organization backed by the financial resources of the Optimum Group. For more information, visit www.optimum-general.com/en/owic.home.shtml.

SOURCE Offsetters Clean Technology

For further information:

Media contacts:
Melanie Wong, Offsetters: 604-699-2652 or melanie@offsetters.ca
Kyley Young, Optimum West: 604-688-1541 or kyoung@optimumwest.bc.ca
Deirdre Campbell, Tartan Group: 250-592-3838, 250-882-9199 (cell) or deirdre@tartangroup.ca

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