Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

New program makes saving energy more affordable

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Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources

New program makes saving energy more affordable

Media Contacts
Kent Karemaker
Media Relations
Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources
250 886-5400
Caroline Thériault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
613 462-5473
Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
ec.media.ec@canada.ca
819-938333 or 1 844 836-7799 (toll-free)
(flickr.com)
Media Contacts
Kent Karemaker
Media Relations
Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources
250 886-5400
Caroline Thériault
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
613 462-5473
Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
ec.media.ec@canada.ca
819-938333 or 1 844 836-7799 (toll-free)

Backgrounders

EfficiencyBC: program overview

EfficiencyBC is an integrated offer of financial incentives, information and support to help households and businesses save energy and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by switching to high-efficiency heating equipment and making building-envelope improvements.

Residential Renovation Program:

  • New incentives for homeowners to upgrade their windows and doors, and switch to high-efficiency electric heat pumps for space heating and water heating. For example: $2,000 for an air-source heat pump for space heating (and up to $4,000 in some partnering municipalities) and up to $1,000 for windows/doors.
  • The enhanced utility Home Renovation Rebate program offers for other high-efficiency space and water heating equipment, and insulation. For example: a total of $700 for a high-efficiency natural gas furnace and up to $1,200 each for basement insulation, external wall cavity insulation and external wall sheathing insulation.
  • A New Home Energy Improvement bonus of up to $2,000 for homeowners who undertake multiple upgrades and complete energy assessments on their home.
  • A $300 rebate for hiring an EnerGuide Home Energy Advisor to do a personalized energy assessment of a home ($450 in some partnering municipalities).
  • Free energy coaching services by phone and email to help people make decisions about their renovation projects.

Commercial Renovation Program:

  • This program is for commercial buildings, multi-unit residential buildings and non-profit housing.
  • Whole building, performance-based offer of $40-70 per tonne of GHG reductions (up to $200,000) integrated with partner utility and BC Housing offers.
  • Eligible upgrades include fuel switching to high-efficiency electric space and water heating equipment, installing high-efficiency gas-fired space and water heating equipment, as well as improvements to mechanical systems and building envelopes.
  • Up to $20,000 for energy studies to identify cost-effective improvements.

Saving money

The renovation incentives launched as part of the EfficiencyBC program complement and enhance programs currently offered. These include BC Hydro and FortisBC’s Home Renovation Rebate Program, FortisBC's Commercial Custom Design Program, BC Hydro's Custom Rebate Program, and FortisBC and BC Hydro's Social Housing Retrofit Support Program.

The following are examples of how people can save money when taking advantage of the EfficiencyBC program:

Example 1:

  • City of Vancouver resident, home heated with natural gas, natural gas water heater
  • Undertakes a pre- and post-upgrade energy assessment ($300 from EfficiencyBC, $150 from City of Vancouver)
  • Converts to electric air source heat pump ($2,000 from EfficiencyBC, $2,000 from City of Vancouver)
  • Installs condensing tankless natural gas water heater ($500 from FortisBC)
  • Adds attic insulation of R30 x 1000ft2 ($600 from BC Hydro)
  • Home Energy Improvement Bonus, improving EnerGuide score by 60% ($1,200)
  • Total rebate: $6,750

Example 2:

  • Kelowna resident, home heated with baseboard electricity from FortisBC, natural gas water heater
  • Installs a single-head ductless heat pump ($1,200 from FortisBC)
  • Converts to electric air source heat pump water heater ($1,000 from EfficiencyBC)
  • Two-upgrade bonus ($300)
  • Total rebate: $2,500

Example 3:

  • Saanich resident, home heated with oil
  • Undertakes a pre- and post-upgrade energy assessment ($300)
  • Converts to electric air source heat pump ($2,000 from EfficiencyBC, $350 from District of Saanich)
  • Adds basement insulation of R10 x 722ft2 ($650 from BC Hydro)
  • Installs 10 eligible windows or doors ($500 from the BC Hydro)
  • Home Energy Improvement Bonus, improving EnerGuide score by 55% ($1,100)
  • Total rebate: $4,900

Example 4:

  • Fort Nelson resident, home heated with natural gas
  • Undertakes a pre- and post-upgrade energy assessment ($300)
  • Installs ENERGYSTAR Most Efficient natural gas furnace ($700 from FortisBC and EfficiencyBC)
  • Installs 12 eligible windows or doors ($600 from EfficiencyBC)
  • Adds exterior wall cavity insulation of R12 x 741ft2 ($800 from FortisBC)
  • Home Energy Improvement Bonus, improving EnerGuide score by 30% ($600)
  • Total rebate: $3,100

EfficiencyBC - website

The EfficiencyBC website is B.C.’s new online hub for homeowners and businesses to access incentives, information and support to reduce energy use and GHG emissions in homes and buildings.

The EfficiencyBC site allows users to search for all available incentives based on their location and heating type, including not only provincial and utility rebates but also municipal offers, federal tax breaks and other offers in the market (e.g. financing and mortgage-related discounts). EfficiencyBC streamlines the process by combining many of these offers into one application.

Additionally, the EfficiencyBC website provides information to help homeowners and businesses make decisions on how to save energy, offering a free coaching service by phone or email. Energy coaches are trained energy-efficiency specialists who provide building-science based information about options and opportunities to improve energy efficiency. They are available to answer questions at all stages of an energy improvement project.

Federal and provincial context

EfficiencyBC is jointly funded by British Columbia and the Government of Canada’s Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund (LCELF).

The LCELF was developed as a $2-billion fund to invest in projects that generate clean growth and reduce GHGs. The fund is a key component of the Pan Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change (PCF), a plan developed by the federal government and the provinces and territories to meet Canada’s emissions reduction targets and grow the economy.

EfficiencyBC will support progress towards the Province’s legislated GHG reduction targets, as well as a commitment to develop retrofit programs.

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