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April 22, 2016
Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Plan Photo from: http://www.mayorofvancouver.ca/news/greenest-city-action-plan-updated-2015-2020 In Vancouver on Earth Day, it’s hard not to discuss the goals to become a greener city. Most people in Metro Vancouver are aware that Vancouver’s Greenest City Action Plan, a plan developed by the City of Vancouver, aims to make Vancouver the greenest city in the world by 2020. The goals are very ambitious, positioning Vancouver as a city that cares about the environment. And Vancouver does! Vancouver culture is focused on the great outdoors, mountains to ocean; working to reduce emissions and improve building practices is a priority for many Metro Vancouver residents. One of the major changes aimed at reducing emissions is the City of Vancouver building code update  which came into effect January 1, 2015. Most of the code changes for both new build and renovation are focused on accessibility, safety and energy. Implementing the codes has been a challenge for the city, home-owners and builders, but overall, moving in a positive direction. How Sasen is adapting for Earth Day: Attending workshops and training Staying up-to-date as part of the GVHBA groups, panels and discussions Practice and implementing new policy changes Sasen is adapting! We have many on-going renovation projects in the City of Vancouver and have adjusted to the code. Our permit process protocols now factor-in the ASHRAE energy check-list. The city-required paperwork is onerous, but Sasen has attended information sessions in order to be prepared for changes and is putting what we know into practice what we have learned through multiple permit submissions. Practice makes permit! Sasen has attended several workshops to stay up-to-date regarding insulation, window requirements and green building practices. The Greater Vancouver Home Builders Association (GVHBA) as a great resource for information regarding changes in both permit and building practices. On Monday, Sasen’s principal, Matthew Senf is attending solar energy training through local Burnaby company, Amray Solar, in order to pick up some tips on renewable energy options. This training will focus on tie-ins to the existing grid, in order to harness solar power and send to an inverter. For more information regarding solar panels, check out Amray’s solar technology FAQ. Whether it’s Earth Day or any day, saving money is great! BC Hydro’s Net Metering Program will credit home owners’ account for the power you produce from a renewable or clean source, such as solar. They will even pay you back if you produce more power with alternative energy! This allows home owners to use hydro as a back-up to your solar energy. If you are looking for solar, it’s something we can build into as part of your renovation. Just in time for Earth Day: Province of BC funding announcement Just in time for Earth Day, the province of British Columbia announced that it would be allocating $1.4 million from the Innovative Clean Energy Fund (ICE) that will be for home owner rebates and industry training.  Both the industry and home-owners will both be able to decrease their impact on the environment. See the Province of BC’s news release  for more information.