12 District Energy / Second Quarter 2018 © 2018 International District Energy Association. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
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Metro Vancouver’s vibrant
district energy market
Across the greater Vancouver, B.C., area, neighborhood energy systems
are growing in size and number and increasing their use of renewable
Kathryn Ramsted, Editorial Associate, District Energy
The mountain-backed seaport of Vancouver, B.C., on Canada’s Pacific coast is recognized as one of the most livable, environmentally conscious cities in the world. The birthplace of Greenpeace nearly 50 years ago, Vancouver has long been focused on mitigating the effects of climate change. It has the lowest per capita carbon emissions of any major city in North
America, and its sights are set on becoming the greenest city on the globe. The city of Vancouver
has enacted a number of policies and initiatives in support of that goal.
Among them is the Renewable City Strategy announced in 2015, with its two overarching
objectives to be reached before 2050: to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80 percent
below 2007 levels and derive 100 percent of the energy used citywide from renewable sources.
The development and expansion of low-carbon district energy networks, or neighborhood energy
systems, is a key strategy for meeting these targets.
Editor’s note: IDEA’s 2018 Annual Conference and Trade Show offers attendees the opportunity to tour a few key district energy systems
in the Metro Vancouver, B.C., region. District Energy previews these systems with a look at some of their most recent developments.
District energy providers across
Metro Vancouver have already been tak-
ing the lead in establishing new low-
carbon systems and upgrading exist-
ing ones. The area is home to a vibrant
district energy market (fig. 1), reflecting
a diverse array of settings and technolo-
gies. A closer look at a sampling of these
systems – in Vancouver, Richmond and
Burnaby – illustrates just how active and
forward-thinking they are as they con-
tribute to preserving Metro Vancouver
as one of Canada’s greenest and most