Getting to Implementation (GTI)
Communities have a key role to play in energy. More than 180 communities in Canada, representing 50 percent of the population, have a Community Energy Plan (CEP). A CEP is a tool that defines community priorities around energy with a view to improving efficiency, cutting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and driving economic development. While many communities in Canada are advancing Community Energy Plans (CEPs) – also known as Local Action Plans – to define priorities around energy and sustainability, all communities need help getting from plans and ideas to implementation.
Launched in 2014, GTI is being spearheaded by three main project partners: CEA (Community Energy Association), Quest (Quality Urban Energy Systems of Tomorrow) and SP (Sustainable Prosperity).
Eco-West, via its parent organization CDEM (Conseil de développement économique des municipalités bilingues du Manitoba), is one of the main supporters of the GTI project, along with Western Canada’s three other provincial francophone economic development organizations (FEDOs): Conseil de la Coopération de la Saskatchewan (CCS), Conseil de développement économique de l’Alberta (CDÉA), and Société de développement économique de la Colombie-Britannique (SDÉCB).
The role of the FEDOs is to enhance the vitality of minority language communities in Western Canada and assist them in their economic development as well as their sustainability initiatives and the greening of their communities.
An important step in the creation of a CEP (or ‘Local Action Plan’) for a municipality is the conducting of a GHG emissions inventory, a process that collects data on community and municipal energy use and solid waste generation in order to estimate the rate of GHG emissions in a given year.
The objective of the GHG inventory is to identify emissions sources based on the types of energy used, the sectors involved (transportation, buildings, water treatment plants, residual materials management, etc.), and the equipment being used throughout a municipality. To date, Eco-West has completed more than three dozen such inventories in Manitoba, while CEA has inventoried 60 communities in British-Columbia. The results can then be used to develop an action plan to achieve emissions reductions targets, and ultimately be standardized for use in other municipalities who may wish to launch similar initiatives in their own jurisdictions.
Objectives of the GTI Initiative
- Identify barriers and opportunities for integrated and principle-based community energy planning
- Define business models for government agencies, utilities, real estate professionals and other community energy stakeholders
- Develop tools and resources for an integrated and principle-based approach to community energy planning such as step-by-step guides and best practice examples
- Increase understanding and awareness of integrated and principle-based community energy planning across Canada
- Improve capacity among Canadian CEP practitioners to provide support for integrated community energy planning/local action plans
Other project supporters include: The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, Suncor Energy, the Alberta Real Estate Foundation and the Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia.
To learn more about the GTI project, please visit www.gettingtoimplementation.ca.