Sometimes it’s hard to think about the environment when you’re so busy running a municipality.
But the Town of Oliver hasn’t forgotten about its obligation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on its way to becoming carbon neutral.
The Town, province and Union of BC Municipalities are co-signers of the Climate Action Charter, which requires the Town to report publicly on its accomplishments.
The Town’s plan is to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions by two per cent by 2020, and by 10 per cent by 2030. It also plans to reduce corporate greenhouse gas emissions by 10 per cent by 2020.
Chief Financial Officer Dave Svetlichny said “lighting” actions have included retrofitting downtown street lights with more energy efficient LED lights.
Staff has also insulated the Public Works truck bay ceiling, he pointed out.
A new energy efficient HVAC system has also been installed in the Town Hall.
Svetlichny said they also designed a solar photovoltaic array to offset power used for the Town’s sewer treatment system.
In terms of green space, the Town has constructed two new parks (on Fairview Road and Gala Street). A plan is also underway to construct a new park adjacent to the Town hike and bike trail (near the bridge on Fairview Road).
There is also riparian area designation protection on a property in the industrial zone.
The Town continues to support regional recycling, yard waste and waste collection initiatives.
It provides Christmas tree and spring yard waste chipping to residents, and continues to partner with BC Transit to provide public transportation services.
The Town also proposes to install GPS fleet management systems in municipal vehicles, and plans are underway to install an electric vehicle charging station within Town boundaries.
The municipality has implemented a groundwater protection plan, and has moved one new park to the Town’s reclaimed waste water irrigation system.
Council is also working on developing a drought and water restriction plan, and is preparing a business case to move to “paperless” council agendas.
By Lyonel Doherty