The Flats houses a significant concentration of aging industrial buildings, large heating and cooling systems, and flat shadeless roofs. This creates numerous opportunities for energy retrofit and renewable energy projects.
What are retrofits & renewables?
Green retrofits are sustainability-driven building upgrades that improve operational and energy efficiency and create high-performance buildings. Pursuing greater energy efficiency not only reduces the environmental footprint of a building, but can also reduce long-term operational costs. These retrofits often include the integration of clean technology or renewable energy—power that is generated from naturally replenished resources such as sunlight, wind, or geothermal sources.
Why are retrofits & renewables important to the Flats?
Over half of the Flats’ 325 buildings are over 50 years old, which means they are due for upgrading old energy, waste, and ventilation systems with newer, more efficient, and more sustainable technologies.
How do we support renewables and green retrofits in the Flats?
the Footprint of the Flats
In order to understand the potential of the Flats, we’ve enlisted a number of non-profits and university researchers to help us uncover the highest impact opportunities for improvement. This research is being used to help guide new policy, programming, and capital projects as the Flats develops.
Businesses to Green their Operations
Many businesses in the Flats are interested in greening their operations to reduce their costs and environmental impact, but it can be difficult to know where to start. By connecting businesses with programs, tools, technologies, and information, we are helping them get started.
Renewable Energy + Building Retrofit Projects
Identifying specific barriers to implementation for renewable energy and green retrofit projects is helping us develop funding and policy support for making capital-intensive building, infrastructure, and equipment improvements. Myth-busting is also integral to getting these projects off the ground.
Who is leading the green retrofit and renewable energy movement in the Flats?
Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC) moved its head office to the False Creek Flats in 2015, building a state-of-the-art lead platinum facility to house its operations. Features of the building include natural lighting, a high-performance building envelope, energy monitoring, as well as passive cooling, heating and ventilation systems. Despite locating on an ecologically challenging site, their new headquarters has become the first Salmon Safe Certified urban site in Canada.
Rainforest Automation is a cleantech startup operating out of Discovery Parks in the False Creek Flats. Rainforest Automation develops commercial and residential products for helping their customers measure and manage real-time energy use. Their devices, software products and services enable their clients to automate energy efficiency programs and reduce their energy costs.