Important focuses for city shared at Climate Caucus
Efforts by the City of Cranbrook to create energy efficiency, reduce corporate greenhouse gas emissions and how the city’s engineered and natural assets are managed were the key focus by the municipality at a public information session Tuesday night at the College of the Rockies.
The City of Cranbrook partnered with the Citizens’ Climate Lobby Canada – East Kootenay Chapter and the Climate Caucus to organize the session, which allowed staff to share the activities and the initiatives undertaken by the city over the last seven years.
Some of the most significant initiatives undertaken by the city include the creation of an asset management framework. This establishes an asset management policy for engineered and natural assets (creeks, forests and watersheds) and will provide updated infrastructure models to evaluate capacity, future growth and future impacts of climate change locally. It also examines lifecycles and energy costs, while establishing priorities, timeline and budget.
“The city is taking a strong and proactive approach to ensuring our core services remain sustainable for the long term,” said Mike Matejka, Manager of Infrastructure Planning and Delivery for the City of Cranbrook. “Recognizing and protecting the immense value of natural assets is essential to this sustainability.”
City staff also highlighted the impact of the successful 2017 pool dehumidification (heat recovery) project at Western Financial Place, which received recognition from the Community Energy Association Climate and Energy Action Awards. The project has allowed the municipality to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 231 tons per year while providing an annual cost savings to taxpayers of nearly $40,000 per year.
The city also discussed actions and planning around flood mitigation and stormwater management; creek and watershed health; water conservation, distribution, treatment and supply planning; wildfire interface protections; cycle and walking infrastructure and corporate energy conservation measures.
“The city has made great progress through our energy conservation programs,” said Katelyn Pocha, Water and Wastewater Project Manager with the City of Cranbrook. “We continue to monitor corporate energy consumption which assists us in identifying projects and opportunities for operational efficiencies that will reduce our consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.”
One of the most impactful projects the city will be working on in 2020 and 2021 is a Drinking Water Quality & Supply Master Plan. Clean and safe drinking water is crucial to a healthy and vibrant community, and it’s often taken for granted without fully knowing the investments and resources required to keep the taps flowing. Through this plan the city will identify current and future risks that may impact the quality, quantity and supply of water, while considering future growth, demand, and potential impacts of climate change.
Lead image: Mike Matejka, Manager of Infrastructure Planning & Delivery (left) and Katelyn Pocha, Water and Wastewater Project Manager (right) discuss the City of Cranbrook’s efforts to create energy efficiency, reduce GHG emissions and manage our corporate assets with a group of interested and engaged citizens at the College of the Rockies Tuesday night. Photo: City of Cranbrook
City of Cranbrook