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Eight organizations honoured at FortisBC’s 2019 Efficiency in Action Awards

Oct 30, 2019

Annual awards highlight the positive work underway to lower emissions through energy efficiency

SURREY, B.C. - With the growing importance of local climate action, the eight winners announced today at FortisBC’s Efficiency in Action Awards reflect the positive, ongoing and innovative work happening across sectors to reduce emissions from some of the province’s most critical facilities.

“Energy efficiency remains one of the most effective and affordable ways to reduce emissions, and the year-over-year efforts of these organizations represent some of the best work we’re seeing in this area,” said Danielle Wensink, director, energy management and conservation, FortisBC. “Their work exemplifies the long-term planning, ongoing investment and innovative strategies necessary to make places like hospitals, ice arenas and senior’s homes all more sustainable. We’re pleased to highlight their work through these awards.” 

Each year, FortisBC hosts the Efficiency in Action Awards to showcase the exceptional work organizations of all sizes in B.C. are doing to achieve energy savings in new buildings, commercial upgrades and industrial operations. This year, FortisBC focused on organizations that make continuous, year-over-year investment to lower their energy use. 

The 2019 Efficiency in Action winners are the City of Nanaimo, Fraser Health Authority, Pacific Environmental Science Centre, Burnaby School District No. 41, Pizza Hut Restaurants, the Presbyterian Senior Citizens’ Housing Society, Molycop Canada and Cressey Development Group.


From left to right: Danielle Wensink, FortisBC; Mike Gregson, Molycop Canada; Scott Pamminger, City of Naniamo; Nikolas Fehr, Environment and Climate Change Canada; Jeson Mak, Fraser Health Authority; Cathy McDonald, Fraser Health Authority; Ron Zapp, The Presbyterian Senior Citizens’ Housing Society;  Chris Turcotte, Cressey Development Group; Matt Foley, Burnaby School District; Alexis Takahashi, Burnaby School District; Bryce Hollweg, Pizza Hut; and Josh Munro, Burnaby School District.

All of these organizations achieved significant energy savings by making energy efficiency part of their everyday decision-making and annual planning. For example, since 2011, Pizza Hut continually replaces aging kitchen equipment at their 52 locations with high-efficiency models. With technology constantly improving, this approach provides them with continual access to efficiency advancements plus financial support from FortisBC.

For the board of the Presbyterian Senior Citizens' Housing Society, tenants’ comfort was an important driver as well as cost savings. After learning energy use at their Dunwood Place senior’s home in New Westminster was 50 per cent higher than similar buildings, they sought support from FortisBC and BC Housing to make substantial upgrades to their heating and ventilation system. The resulting annual savings of $18,000 will provide funds for future projects.

“Tenants in our seniors building were complaining of being too cold in the winter and the colder they were the higher the thermostat and gas bills went,” said Linda Bilinski, administrator, Dunwood Place. “We got rid of the old gigantic fire breathing boilers and maintenance is minimal now. More efficient and more comfortable for tenants. We are doing our part in saving our planet. Since the project was fully covered, it frees up some of our savings for other projects and the future of Dunwood Place and its low income seniors is now brighter.”

These award-winning customers represent just a sample of the positive and effective work organizations are doing to lower emissions through energy efficiency. By taking part in its conservation and energy efficiency programs in 2018, FortisBC customers collectively reduced their greenhouse gas emissions the equivalent of taking 8,000 gas-powered cars off the road for a year. FortisBC is tripling its investment in these programs over the next four years and anticipates substantially increasing these savings. This is one of the ways FortisBC is working towards its 30BY30 Target of lowering GHG emissions associated with their customers’ energy use by 30 per cent overall by the year 2030. For more information, visit

Key facts:

  • Pizza Hut (PH Restaurants LP) (Vancouver), received the Food Service award for making energy efficiency an ongoing investment in their 52 locations and continually replacing aging kitchen equipment with the most energy-efficient equipment available.
  • Cressey Development Group (Vancouver), received the Small Commercial Customer award for incorporating high-efficiency natural gas equipment into Lower Mainland homes to meet BC Step Code and their ongoing efforts to retrofit their rental apartments and build new large-scale construction projects to high efficiency standards.
  • Fraser Health Authority (New Westminster), received the Public Sector – Provincial award for its ongoing efforts to use energy resources wisely though its energy management programs and their continued effort to leverage new technologies and design improvements, while maintaining a reliable, healthy indoor environment for patients and staff in their 12 health facilities. 
  • The Presbyterian Senior Citizens’ Housing Society (New Westminster), received the Medium Commercial Customer award for completing a full-scale energy study of its Dunwood Place seniors’ home and implementing all of the recommended upgrades to its the space and water heating equipment.
  • Burnaby School District No. 41 received the Large Commercial Customer award for a decade of continual focus on energy efficiency, which includes identifying, planning, and managing energy conservation projects on a day-to-day basis; building and upgrading its schools to high-efficiency standards, and promoting energy efficiency with its staff and students.
  • Pacific Environmental Science Centre (North Vancouver), received the Public Sector – Federal award for achieving carbon-neutral status by upgrading to high-efficiency natural gas equipment and reinvesting the savings into additional efficiency projects and FortisBC Renewable Natural Gas.
  • The City of Nanaimo received the Public Sector – Municipal award for continually seeking new ways to lower its energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions within its facilities which recently included implementing new innovative high-efficiency technology in its ice rink operations.
  • Molycop Canada (Kamloops), received the Industrial award for continually exploring new opportunities and implementing energy efficiency projects in its Kamloops operations.


Media contact

Nicole Brown
Corporate Communications Advisor 
FortisBC Energy Inc.
[email protected]
24-hour media line: 1-855-322-6397


FortisBC is a regulated utility focused on providing safe and reliable energy, including natural gas, electricity and propane. FortisBC employs more than 2,400 British Columbians and serves approximately 1.2 million customers across B.C. FortisBC owns and operates two liquefied natural gas storage facilities and four regulated hydroelectric generating plants, approximately 7,200 kilometres of transmission and distribution power lines, and approximately 48,700 kilometres of natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines. FortisBC Inc. and FortisBC Energy Inc. do business as FortisBC. FortisBC is indirectly, wholly owned by Fortis Inc., a leader in the North American electric and gas utility business. FortisBC uses the FortisBC name and logo under license from Fortis Inc. Additional information can be accessed at or