Media centre details

Eleven organizations recognized for big energy savings at FortisBC’s 2021 Efficiency in Action Awards

Oct 21, 2021

Organizations honoured for energy efficiency projects and collectively reducing greenhouse gas emissions the equivalent to removing 1,000 gas-powered cars off the road for a year.

Surrey, BC, October 21, 2021: Eleven of the biggest energy savers in the province are being recognized today at FortisBC Inc. and FortisBC Energy Inc.’s (collectively, FortisBC) annual Efficiency in Action Awards for the positive and innovative work they’ve completed. Their projects prioritized energy efficiency leading to significant greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions and energy savings across key sectors in the province.

“It’s inspiring to see such a variety of organizations–from a school district to a Canadian Forces military base–find innovative ways to integrate energy efficiency into their building upgrades and demonstrate the many positive outcomes,” said Carol Suhan, manager, community programs, conservation and energy management at FortisBC. “We’re proud to honour their achievements today and showcase the collective effort that is helping us achieve a lower carbon energy future.”

The 2021 Efficiency in Action Award winners are Trellis Seniors Services Ltd., Campbell River School District No. 72, Concord W1 Limited Partnership, Okanagan College, City of Powell River, Providence Health Care, Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt, Kruger Products L.P., Caterina Restaurant Corporation (McDonalds), Metro Vancouver Housing Corporation and the Osoyoos Indian Band.

Each organization is a great example of how working toward individual sustainability goals also contributes to larger initiatives like the province’s climate action goals and FortisBC’s 30BY30 target. Beyond advancing a cleaner tomorrow for British Columbia, other benefits of these projects are being passed along to the students, staff and residents living and working in these spaces. For the Campbell River School District, the money saved from lower annual operational costs is now going to support classroom learning while at Providence Health Care, the upgrades meant more comfortable spaces for patients, staff and visitors at St. Paul’s Hospital.

“Every project we undertake is viewed through the lens of sustainability and this is why we look for the most efficient ways to reduce energy use and GHG emissions while helping improve the spaces for our staff and patients,” said Tony Munster, executive director, projects, planning and facilities management at Providence Health Care. “With the incentives we received from FortisBC for this project, we’re able to reallocate funding into other initiatives that will further reduce our GHG emissions for years to come.”

Even smaller spaces like restaurants are seeing the benefits of energy efficient equipment to help save on annual operational costs and lower emissions. Joe Guzzo, owner of Caterina Restaurant Corporation, has continually worked with FortisBC on a number of energy efficiency projects and most recently installed high-efficiency cooking equipment in several McDonald’s locations across the Lower Mainland.

“When we look to upgrade our equipment, energy efficient models are the way to go because we see our employees producing great products that are enjoyed by our guests,” said Guzzo. “We want to support our employees in doing the best job possible and using high-efficiency equipment can help us do just that–it’s also a bonus that it’s saving us energy while lowering utility costs.”

Together, nine of these organizations are saving more than 63,000 gigajoules of natural gas annually, the energy equivalent to heating almost 740 homes each year and saving more than 3,200 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent annually, the equivalent to removing about 1,000 gas-powered cars from the road for a year. The two winning organizations in FortisBC’s electric service territory are saving more than 730,000 kilowatt hours annually, the equivalent energy needed to power about 70 homes for a year. FortisBC provided more than $2.8 million in energy efficiency incentives to the winning organizations, helping them cover a portion of the upfront costs for these upgrades.

Last year, FortisBC invested more than $85 million in programs and incentives to help customers reduce their energy use and save on their monthly energy bills. Investing in innovative and effective ways to reduce GHG emissions through energy efficiency is one of the ways FortisBC is working towards their 30BY30 target–an ambitious goal to reduce their customers’ GHG emissions by 30 per cent by 2030. To learn more about the work these organizations completed visit

Key facts

  • Trellis Seniors Services Ltd. received the Small Commercial award for installing high-efficiency natural gas boilers, domestic hot water heaters and ENERGY STAR® natural gas cooking equipment at Hamilton Village Care Centre in Richmond.
  • Campbell River School District No.72 received the Medium Commercial award for upgrading to high-efficiency boilers at Willow Point Elementary and Phoenix Middle School as well as installing a condensing makeup air unit at the Southgate Middle School workshop.
  • Concord W1 Limited Partnership received the Large Commercial award as they installed ten high-efficiency boilers in the Garden Lot 2 and W1 buildings in Vancouver helping them reduce carbon emissions.
  • Okanagan College received the Medium Public Sector award for their upgrades at their Health Sciences Centre in Kelowna which included upgrading the lighting, heating, ventilation and air conditioner systems as well as tightening up the building envelope. All told, they saw a 30 per cent increase in energy performance compared to the baseline building code.
  • The City of Powell River received the Municipal Public Sector award for installing a number of energy conservation measures at the Powell River Recreation Complex, including a natural gas condensing boiler, a heat exchanger and implementing direct digital control optimization.
  • Providence Health Care received the Provincial Public Sector award for their ongoing efforts to reduce energy use through innovative technology. They installed a thermal gradient header system at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver which allows for a more reliable cooling and heating system and is expected to save around 16,000 GJ of annual natural gas use. There are now opportunities for other local hospitals to install this technology to realize significant energy savings.
  • Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt received the Federal Public Sector award for their capital upgrade project which included upgrading boilers and hot water heaters, installing a heat recovery system as well as many other energy conservation measures across their base. They are expected to achieve about a 21 per cent reduction in GHG emissions which is a positive step in helping them reaching their goal of net-zero by 2050 while remaining operationally effective.
  • Kruger Products L.P. received the Industrial award for their commitment to reducing energy and emissions through the installation of high-efficiency equipment and performing a feasibility study for their operations at their plant in New Westminster. Since 2012, they’ve worked with FortisBC on a number of energy efficiency projects as Kruger Products L.P. is working to reduce their GHG emissions by 25 per cent by 2030.
  • Caterina Restaurant Corp. (McDonald’s) received the Food Service award as they’ve taken part in various energy efficiency projects over the years and most recently installed high-efficiency natural gas kitchen equipment in several McDonald’s locations across the Lower Mainland.
  • Metro Vancouver Housing Corporation received the Innovation award for installing commercial natural gas heat pumps at a multi-family building in Vancouver and achieving 35 per cent in annual natural gas savings.

Osoyoos Indian Band received the Community award for their work to retrofit 170 homes in their community by upgrading insulation, air sealing and installing high-efficiency space and water heating systems. This helped reduce energy use in homes by 40 per cent and residents are paying $1,500 to $2,500 less a year on utility bills.


Media contact

Lauren Lea
Corporate Communications Specialist
Phone: 604-312-8158
Email: [email protected]
24-hour media line: 1-855-322-6397

About FortisBC
FortisBC Inc. and FortisBC Energy Inc. do business as FortisBC, a regulated utility focused on providing safe and reliable energy, including natural gas, electricity, renewable gas, propane and thermal energy solutions. FortisBC employs approximately 2,550 British Columbians and serves over 1.2 million customers in 135 B.C. communities. FortisBC owns and operates two liquefied natural gas storage facilities and four regulated hydroelectric generating plants, approximately 7,335 kilometres of transmission and distribution power lines, and approximately 50,182 kilometres of natural gas transmission and distribution pipelines. FortisBC is indirectly, wholly owned by Fortis Inc., a leader in the North American regulated electric and gas utility industry. FortisBC Inc. and FortisBC Energy Inc. use the FortisBC name and logo under license from Fortis Inc. For further information on FortisBC, visit For further information on Fortis Inc., visit