Energy efficiency aims to reduce the environmental, economic, and social costs (direct and indirect) incurred by the production, transportation, and consumption of energy.
It contributes to reducing the ecological footprint, while improving energy security and adaptation to climate change, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and generally facilitating the energy transition of a community.
Energy efficiency is not only an objective but also a comprehensive tool to achieve more fundamental objectives, in particular environmental ones. Municipalities, individual communities, and their local economies face unprecedented challenges arising from costly and/or limited energy resources, as well as from the need to combat climate change and overcome cyclical economic crisis. Energy efficiency is thus a valuable tool to address these challenges, while also contributing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in a cost-effective way and thus to mitigate the effects of climate change.
During the past few years, EWC has partnered with certified energy advisors to conduct feasibility studies that have resulted in the creation of community energy plans for municipalities and First Nation communities in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The steps in this process are (a) the energy audit, which is designed to identify energy efficiency gaps in a municipality and (b) the feasibility study, which identifies potential improvements and assesses their cost-effectiveness, including a triple bottom lie analysis and benefits. This sector of activity also includes GHG inventories, conducted by Eco-West Canada for small to medium-size municipalities as part of our climate change local action plan (CCLAP) process.
Eco-West Canada helps municipalities gain access to community energy efficiency programs for municipal buildings and operations, recreational installations/facilities, etc., through grants offered by a variety of provincial and federal funders, including Efficiency Manitoba and the federal government’s Green and Inclusive Community Buildings (GICB) program, among others.