June 11, 2014

Town to track and cut energy use

As published in The Erin Advocate

A new energy conservation plan could help redirect money to core services at the Town of Erin and improve its public image, according to a report from Financial Analyst Larry Wheeler.

Town council was told on June 3 that the Green Energy Act requires municipalities to develop and implement energy Conservation and Demand Management (CDM) plans starting this year.

“A commitment to being ‘green’ will be perceived as a positive development in the eyes of the public,” said Wheeler.

The plan for energy consumption cost savings must include the administrative offices, council chambers, both ice rinks, both community centres, both fire halls, the Hillsburgh ambulance station, the Erin village OPP office, both Roads Department storage and equipment depots and all Water Department facilities.

It will include data on energy use and greenhouse gas emissions last year, goals for reducing consumption and managing demand, and proposed actions with expected savings and timelines.

Council had set aside $16,000 for development of the plan in the 2014 capital  budget. The goal is to generate cost savings in 2014, plus ongoing savings from restraint strategies.

“It is hoped that by including members of the most affected departments in the CDM planning process, that the concept of reducing the demand for energy in the future will overlay all strategic decision making processes,” said Wheeler.