2010 Winter Games to source clean power from BC Hydro and promote energy conservation

    VANOC CEO John Furlong joins Team Power Smart

    VANCOUVER, March 18 /CNW/ - A new standard of environmental stewardship
for Olympic and Paralympic Games was reached today with the announcement of an
agreement between BC Hydro and the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010
Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC).
    In its role as an Official Supporter of the 2010 Winter Games, BC Hydro
will provide the resources to supply clean power for the Games. In addition,
through its Power Smart programs, BC Hydro will work with VANOC to ensure the
Games are energy-efficient and promote energy conservation across BC.
    As part of its Official Supporter partnership, BC Hydro will provide
secondments of personnel, as well as the temporary use of some BC Hydro
properties and electrical connection equipment during the Games.
    By using clean, hydroelectric power, the 2010 Winter Games will see their
carbon dioxide emissions from power generation reduced to the lowest level yet
for an Olympic Winter Games - less than 10 per cent of the emissions of
previous Olympic Winter Games, which relied on diesel-based generation.
    VANOC will pay for the electricity it consumes on the same basis as other
large commercial customers; however, since the use of clean, hydro-electric
power is a lower cost alternative to diesel-based generation, VANOC will
realize significant cost savings over previous Olympic Winter Games.
    "The Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games present a unique
opportunity to profile British Columbia's role as a world leader in the
production of sustainable, clean electricity," said Colin Hansen, Minister of
Economic Development and Minister Responsible for the Asia-Pacific Initiative
and the Olympics. "It also creates new opportunities for promoting energy
conservation - a key goal of the BC Energy Plan."
    "BC Hydro is particularly proud to be an Official Supporter of the
Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games because BC Hydro and the
Games share many of the same values around sustainability and conservation,"
said Bob Elton, BC Hydro President and Chief Executive Officer.
    Elton used today's announcement as an opportunity to draft VANOC Chief
Executive Officer John Furlong to Team Power Smart, which features a group of
more than 20 prominent British Columbians in a province-wide initiative to
encourage energy conservation. As a Team Power Smart leader, Furlong will
demonstrate how all BC residents can take concrete steps to conserve
electricity and reduce their environmental impact through simple lifestyle
    "If every residential customer in BC pledged to reduce their annual
electricity consumption by 10 per cent, the energy savings would be enough to
power 10 Olympic Winter Games - or about 150,000 homes," said Elton.
    "The Games provide an opportunity for each of us to do our best, and to
share our accomplishments and our vision with the world," said Furlong.
"Hosting the Games in a manner that shows respect for the natural environment
is critically important to us. The collaboration with BC Hydro and their
impressive Power Smart programs is therefore a significant step toward
achieving our goals."
    It is estimated that broadcasting the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and
Paralympic Winter Games will be the equivalent of eight to 10 Super Bowls
simultaneously for 17 days. The 2010 Winter Games will need high levels of
electric reliability to support the unique requirements associated with
hosting an event that will attract more than three billion television viewers
and 75 million website visits worldwide.
    To offset the energy consumption, VANOC and BC Hydro are committed to
ensuring the Games venues meet high standards for energy-efficiency design.
VANOC and BC Hydro are conducting energy audits to identify energy-saving
measures, as well as providing conservation education programs for employees,
sponsors, volunteers and venue partners.
    Everyone in British Columbia can help support energy conservation by
joining Team Power Smart. Team members who sign up on the BC Hydro website at
www.bchydro.com will be able to start their own individual conservation game
plan, and access tips and information to help them achieve their goals.

    About BC Hydro

    BC Hydro is one of North America's leading providers of clean, renewable
energy, and the largest electric utility in B.C., serving approximately 95 per
cent of the province's population and 1.7 million customers.

    About VANOC

    VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging
of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The
2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from
February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the Paralympic
Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit www.vancouver2010.com.
    VANOC's marketing program is focusing on securing mutually rewarding
partnerships with shared values to generate sufficient revenue to host
successful Winter Games in 2010 and to leave a financial legacy for sport.
VANOC's International Partners include Coca-Cola, Atos Origin, GE, McDonald's,
Omega, Panasonic, Samsung and Visa. VANOC's National Partners are Bell Canada,
HBC, RBC Financial Group, GM Canada, Petro-Canada and RONA.
    VANOC's Official Supporters include Air Canada, BC Hydro, the British
Columbia Lottery Corporation, Canadian Pacific, and the Insurance Corporation
of British Columbia, Jet Set Sports, Ricoh Canada Inc., the Royal Canadian
Mint and Teck Cominco Limited. VANOC's Official Suppliers are 3M, Birks,
Britco, Dow Canada, EPCOR, Haworth Canada, Nortel, Purolator, Saputo, Sun
Microsystems of Canada, Tickets.com, TransCanada, Vancouver Airport Authority,
Vincor Canada, Weston Bakeries and Workopolis.

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: BC Hydro, Susan Danard, (604)
623-4220; VANOC, Chris Brumwell, (778) 328-6269

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