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FortisBC presents 2012 PowerSense awards

November 19, 2012
Businesses, individuals and organizations recognized for energy conservation

Whether it’s replacing natural gas boilers in a 100¬year-old heritage building or adding energy efficient equipment that cuts costs and improves the lumber product at a local mill, 18 local individuals, businesses and institutions are going the extra mile to be energy efficient.

“Congratulations to the winners for showing regional leadership in energy efficiency,” Bill Bennett, MLA for Kootenay East and Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “Your examples encourage British Columbians living in the West Kootenay and Boundary regions to save energy and money through the LiveSmart BC program, just like over 100,000 households and 9,000 businesses across the province.”

All were recognized today as FortisBC announced the winners of its annual PowerSense Conservation Excellence and Leadership awards for outstanding achievements in energy efficiency.

 “These are leaders in the West Kootenay and Boundary regions when it comes to energy efficiency. Each of these individuals, businesses and institutions has demonstrated a significant and tangible commitment to reducing their electricity and natural gas usage and we’re pleased to recognize them for their efforts,” said Michael Mulcahy, executive vice president, human resources, customer and corporate services, FortisBC.

For the first time, the Awards were part of an all-day forum where energy conscious businesses learned from each other, industry experts and Natural Resources Canada on the most effective ways to manage energy use.
FortisBC PowerSense Conservation Excellence Awards recognize customers who have shown a commitment to innovation, conservation and sustainability by completing energy efficiency projects that save more than 100,000 kilowatt hours annually.

One of the largest projects recognized with a Conservation award was the upgrade to the Creston and District Community Complex, saving nearly $30,000 annually in electricity costs.

With a commitment to using LEED standards as a guideline, the Regional District of Central Kootenay installed a series of energy efficient features, including variable speed drives as part of new mechanical systems; energy efficient motors; energy recovery systems that strip excess heat from refrigeration compressors as well as exhaust air from the building HVAC systems; new roof and upgraded insulation over the entire building; energy efficient central dehumidification system serving both arenas and upgraded lighting throughout.

“When it comes to creating a culture in turning off the lights when you leave a room or keeping doors closed to conserve heat or cooling, everyone here is on the same team. That philosophy followed us right into the design and construction of the upgrades and additions to our facility and has resulted in a 21st-century complex that the entire community and Regional District is proud of,” says Neil Ostafichuk, Recreation Supervisor at the Creston & District Community Complex. “One can see and feel the difference with the improved lighting, insulation, refrigeration and building management system upgrades.”

The West Kootenay/Boundary Conservation Leadership winners — 18 organizations and individuals acting as leaders, catalysts, and educators — are:

Conservation Excellence

Ainsworth Hot Springs Resort, Creston & District Community Complex, Wynndel Box & Lumber, Real Canadian Wholesale Club, Golden Life Management, Pacific Insight, Interior Health, City of Nelson, LPEY Holdings

Leadership Awards

Regional District of Central Kootenay, City of Nelson, City of Rossland, Columbia Brewery

Special Acknowledgements

Kootenay Lighting Wholesalers, Ministry of Energy and Mines (Efficiency Division)

Together with organizations from the Okanagan, these leaders have collectively saved over 13.6 GWh of electricity, enough to power over 1000 homes each year. As well, they have saved more than 6,500 gigajoules of natural gas, which is equivalent to removing more than 80 cars from the road.

The PowerSense Conservation Awards are handed out annually as part of FortisBC’s annual PowerSense month activities. PowerSense month highlights FortisBC’s commitment to energy efficiency and the need to reduce energy consumption and, specifically, peak energy consumption through the winter months.

FortisBC is committed to helping customers conserve energy and get the most out of their energy dollar by providing both financial incentives and advice on energy efficient technologies and practices. Since its inception in 1989, FortisBC’s PowerSense program has helped southern interior electricity customers save more than 425 gigawatt hours (GWh), enough electricity to power over 32,000 homes for a year.

For more information on energy efficiency tips, rebates and programs to help you save energy in your home or business, contact your local PowerSense representative by calling 1-866-436¬7847, email or visit ​

Media contact:

Nicole Bogdanovic
Corporate Communications Specialist
Phone: 250-469-6078

FortisBC is a regulated utility focused on providing safe and reliable energy, including natural gas, electricity, propane and thermal energy solutions. FortisBC employs more than 2,300 British Columbians and serves approximately 1.1 million customers in more than 135 B.C. communities. FortisBC is indirectly wholly owned by Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. FortisBC owns and operates four regulated hydroelectric generating plants, approximately 7,000 kilometres of transmission and distribution power lines and approximately 47,000 kilometres of natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines. FortisBC Inc., FortisBC Energy Inc., FortisBC Energy (Vancouver Island) Inc., and FortisBC Energy (Whistler) Inc. do business as FortisBC. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional information can be accessed at or

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