Climate Change Impacts extended for one week – Ha ha

Do you like this headline?

 

Well it is all to let you know that the comedy contest being hosted by the University of Colorado has extended its deadline to March 8th. One more week to get your entries in.

Here are some details!

Inside the Greenhouse at The University of Colorado-Boulder are holding a comedy & climate change short video competition

1st place: $250 prize ~ 2nd place: $100 ~ 3rd place: $50

Humor is a tool underutilized in the area of climate change; yet comedy has power to effectively connect people, information, ideas, and new ways of thinking/acting.

In this call, we seek to harness the powers of climate comedy through compelling, resonant and meaningful VIDEOS – up to 4 minutes in length – to meet people where they are, and open them up to new and creative engagement.

The winning entry will receive a cash prize, and be shown during the upcoming ‘Stand Up for Climate: An Experiment with Creative Climate Comedy’ night on March 17 at 7:30pm on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder, Colorado.

The event will feature a range of comedic approaches, including standup comedy, sketch and situational comedy, and improv.

The primary audience will be University students along with members of the community in Boulder, Colorado (no age restrictions will be in place).

AWARD CRITERIA: Successful entries will have found the funny while relating to climate change issues. Each entry will be reviewed by a committee composed of students, faculty and graduate students at CU-Boulder.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:

(1)  1-2 page pdf description of entry, including

A. title of creative work,

B. names and affiliations of all authors/contributors,

C. contact information of person submitting the entry,

D. a statement of permissions for use of content, as necessary, and

E. a 100-word description of the work.

(2)  A link to the up-to-4-minute composition, posted on Youtube or
Vimeo or the like

ELIGIBILITY: must be a citizen of Planet Earth; work created since
January 2015 is accepted; works must be less than 4 minutes in length,
captured through video; CU-Boulder employees are not eligible

SUBMISSION DEADLINE:

·        March 8: entries due to itgcomedy@colorado.edu

·        March 14: applicants informed of decisions

·        March 17: winning entries shown at ‘Climate and Comedy’ night

CONTACTS:

Max Boykoff
Associate Professor
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Studies (CIRES)
Center for Science and Technology Policy Research (CSTPR)
Environmental Studies Program Campus Box 488
tel: (303) 735-0451
boykoff@colorado.edu

Danielle K. Garrison
MFA Dance Candidate-Aerial Dance Track University of Colorado-Boulder
Aerialist, Dancer, Choreographer and Teacher Artistic Director and Founder/DKG Dance Entertainment Coordinator and Performer/Frequent Flyers Productions, Inc.
Teaching Artist/Colorado Ballet
Tel: (708) 717-4891
dkgdanceinfo@gmail.com

This initiative is part of the Inside the Greenhouse project at CU-Boulder. More information is here: http://www.insidethegreenhouse.org/

Last call for climate change comedy hour!

Hello all, I came across this video contest, already blogged about here.  The deadline is coming soon – March 1st, submit on a leap day and see if you can make something funny about it!

REMINDER the deadline is Tuesday, March 1st and we are so looking forward to receiving your entries!!

Inside the Greenhouse at The University of Colorado-Boulder are holding a comedy & climate change short video competition

1st place: $250 prize ~ 2nd place: $100 ~ 3rd place: $50

Humor is a tool underutilized in the area of climate change; yet comedy has power to effectively connect people, information, ideas, and new ways of thinking/acting.

In this call, we seek to harness the powers of climate comedy through compelling, resonant and meaningful VIDEOS – up to 4 minutes in length – to meet people where they are, and open them up to new and creative engagement.

The winning entry will receive a cash prize, and be shown during the upcoming ‘Stand Up for Climate: An Experiment with Creative Climate Comedy’ night on March 17 at 7:30pm on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder, Colorado.

The event will feature a range of comedic approaches, including stand up comedy, sketch and situational comedy, and improv.

The primary audience will be University students along with members of the community in Boulder, Colorado (no age restrictions will be in place).

AWARD CRITERIA: Successful entries will have found the funny while relating to climate change issues. Each entry will be reviewed by a committee composed of students, faculty and graduate students at CU-Boulder.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:

(1)  1-2 page pdf description of entry, including

A. title of creative work,

B. names and affiliations of all authors/contributors,

C. contact information of person submitting the entry,

D. a statement of permissions for use of content, as necessary, and

E. a 100-word description of the work.

(2)  A link to the up-to-4-minute composition, posted on Youtube or
Vimeo or the like

ELIGIBILITY: must be a citizen of Planet Earth; work created since January 2015 is accepted; works must be less than 4 minutes in length, captured through video; CU-Boulder employees are not eligible

SUBMISSION DEADLINE:

·        March 1: entries due to itgcomedy@colorado.edu

·        March 14: applicants informed of decisions

·        March 17: winning entries shown at ‘Climate and Comedy’ night

CONTACTS:

Max Boykoff
Associate Professor
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Studies (CIRES) Center for Science and Technology Policy Research (CSTPR) Environmental Studies Program Campus Box 488
tel: (303) 735-0451
boykoff@colorado.edu

Danielle K. Garrison
MFA Dance Candidate-Aerial Dance Track
University of Colorado-Boulder
Aerialist, Dancer, Choreographer and Teacher Artistic Director and Founder/DKG Dance Entertainment Coordinator and Performer/Frequent Flyers Productions, Inc.
Teaching Artist/Colorado Ballet
Tel: (708) 717-4891
dkgdanceinfo@gmail.com

This initiative is part of the Inside the Greenhouse project at CU-Boulder. More information is here:
http://www.insidethegreenhouse.org/

This project acknowledges that, to varying degrees, we are all implicated in, part of, and responsible for greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere. We treat this ‘greenhouse’ as a living laboratory, an intentional place for growing new ideas and evaluating possibilities to confront climate change through a range of mitigation and adaptation strategies.

Our project is also associated with the Spring 2016 ‘creative climate communications’ course (ENVS3173/THTR4173) at CU-Boulder.

Is climate change funny?

Did you hear the one about when the glacier and the rabbi went into the bar, well the rabbi was talking, the glacier melted away and did not make it!

Why did the chicken cross the road?  Well, with a carbon tax, there were no more cars, so he did not actually cross the road, he lived on it!

Is climate change funny, are you a comedian?

So far i have posted on the themes of imagination, the artist and imagining what the future could be and using the power of the human imagination to create a world where humanity addresses climate change.  This has included the visual as well as one play.  I have also been reading some clifi – climate fiction, although not yet posted about any of it.

The other day i got an email based on the list serve that i am part of about a contest hosted by the University of Colorado on climate change and comedy.

Here are the details – If you think you can do it- go for it and if you can think of good jokes, send them my way!

**********

Inside the Greenhouse at The University of Colorado-Boulder are holding a comedy & climate change short video competition

1st place: $250 prize ~ 2nd place: $100 ~ 3rd place: $50

Humor is a tool underutilized in the area of climate change; yet comedy has power to effectively connect people, information, ideas, and new ways of thinking/acting.

In this call, we seek to harness the powers of climate comedy through compelling, resonant and meaningful VIDEOS – up to 4 minutes in length – to meet people where they are, and open them up to new and creative engagement.

The winning entry will receive a cash prize, and be shown during the upcoming ‘Stand Up for Climate: An Experiment with Creative Climate Comedy’ night on March 17 at 7:30pm on the University of Colorado campus in Boulder, Colorado.

The event will feature a range of comedic approaches, including stand up comedy, sketch and situational comedy, and improv.

The primary audience will be University students along with members of the community in Boulder, Colorado (no age restrictions will be in place).

AWARD CRITERIA: Successful entries will have found the funny while relating to climate change issues. Each entry will be reviewed by a committee composed of students, faculty and graduate students at CU-Boulder.

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS:

(1)  1-2 page pdf description of entry, including

A. title of creative work,

B. names and affiliations of all authors/contributors,

C. contact information of person submitting the entry,

D. a statement of permissions for use of content, as necessary, and

E. a 100-word description of the work.

(2)  A link to the up-to-4-minute composition, posted on Youtube or
Vimeo or the like

ELIGIBILITY: must be a citizen of Planet Earth; work created since January 2015 is accepted; works must be less than 4 minutes in length, captured through video; CU-Boulder employees are not eligible

SUBMISSION DEADLINE:

·        March 1: entries due to itgcomedy@colorado.edu

·        March 14: applicants informed of decisions

·        March 17: winning entries shown at ‘Climate and Comedy’ night

CONTACTS:

Max Boykoff
Associate Professor
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Studies (CIRES) Center for Science and Technology Policy Research (CSTPR) Environmental Studies Program Campus Box 488
tel: (303) 735-0451
boykoff@colorado.edu

Danielle K. Garrison
MFA Dance Candidate-Aerial Dance Track
University of Colorado-Boulder
Aerialist, Dancer, Choreographer and Teacher Artistic Director and Founder/DKG Dance Entertainment Coordinator and Performer/Frequent Flyers Productions, Inc.
Teaching Artist/Colorado Ballet
Tel: (708) 717-4891
dkgdanceinfo@gmail.com

This initiative is part of the Inside the Greenhouse project at CU-Boulder. More information is here:
http://www.insidethegreenhouse.org/

This project acknowledges that, to varying degrees, we are all implicated in, part of, and responsible for greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere. We treat this ‘greenhouse’ as a living laboratory, an intentional place for growing new ideas and evaluating possibilities to confront climate change through a range of mitigation and adaptation strategies.

Our project is also associated with the Spring 2016 ‘creative climate communications’ course (ENVS3173/THTR4173) at CU-Boulder.

Feeling Climate Change

Low Carbon and Climate Change Musings

Some more images of climate change and art – this time not from COP21 but from an event taking place in Miami called Art Basel.  I did see a tweet from Ed Burtynsky who i already did a blog about who is also down in Art Basel.

I became aware of this latest entry in the climate change art encyclopaedia (if I can call it that) from one of the many followers (ha!) of this blog (Thanks Martin).

Here is a great article from the NY Times about one of the exhibits and I love this quote “feel climate change in their guts, rather than just understand it.”

Fitting as well since Miami and Florida are one of the coast lines most at risk to rising sea levels from climate change.  I remember going to a conference on emissions trading in air pollution and staying at a new Trump hotel…

View original post 118 more words

Is satire part of the climate culture Hack? Yes of course

As part of this blog’s continuing effort to support the cultural shift that I feel is needed for humanity to really change what we do, and our expectations, here is video making fun / satire of the Koch brothers. If you want to perform your own version of the song and possibly get a viral hit, grist has the vocals here.

Of course, for those of a certain age, it is  obvious that this is satire of the “We are the World” video series.  Here is the original..

I think I will be checking out the people who have produced this as well “Funny or Die” and see if they have any other videos!

And of course the version done by Canadian musicians, called Tears not not enough!. Enjoy!

The polar bear is melting

With COP21 ongoing and non-stop climate news and announcements as well as the fact that I am continually uncovering more attempts of creating art to engage people in the story of climate change.

The Toronto Star had an article about a melting polar bear which was created out of ice and allowed to melt over the course of time that COP 21 was being hosted.

Equiterre head Steven Guilbeault, pictured with one of the sculptures. The campaign in which the polar bear melted over the course of about three weeks was intended to raise awareness about the effects of climate change in the Arctic. It also coincided with the United Nations climate change conference in Paris, France.

The polar bear ice sculpture is part of the action that the environmental group Equiterre is doing.  Lucky you if you want to go see it, you do not have to travel all the way to Paris to see it since it is in Montreal….but you better go fast as it is also melting faster than expected.

 

 

 

 

Burtynsky – the first artist to engage on human impact on the world?

As I start to research and think about the artistic impact on shaping our views on climate change and how these views are mobilizing action, one name which i had forgotten but who had been doing amazing photography work for a long time about the impacts of humans on the natural environment and capturing this in a grand scale is Edward Burtynsky,  He has been taking pictures of the oil sands, mining operations and many others for long time.  These have been presented in books and he does talks and shows tthroughout North America and Worldwide.

Go check him out here and I also have a view of his images below.

Oh and our new Minister of Environment and Climate Change has even called him out in a tweet! but of course I cannot find it!

 

 

 

Green Bonds or green washing?

Green Bonds or Green washing?

7-sins-greenwash

The latest rage in environmental finance is the green bond.   Christiana Figueres the Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change even declared optimistically and perhaps hopefully at the 2014 Investor Summit on Climate Risk in January that 2014 would be the year of the GreenBond (http://www.ceres.org/investor-network/investor-summit ). Based on the issuances and financing of green bonds in 2014 and 2014, most people would agree that Green bonds have taken off and this is the first year where green bond financing has increased significantly from almost nothing to a small player in the finance sector.

The question remains, what makes a bond green?  The definition of a green bond is evolving but one recognized definition is encoded in the green bond principles.  A subset of green bonds are what are called Climate Bonds.  These are primarily promoted by the Climate Bonds Initiative.  Now a number of organizations are starting to define what is a and is not a green bond upfront.  Examples of green bonds that are generally accepted are bonds where the financing is going to renewable energy projects, energy efficiency, waste to energy, mass transit including subways or light rail transit as well as others.  Here is a list of potential projects that have started to be defined by as acceptable for financing by green bonds (link to green bond or climate bond definition).

However, since this is early days of the green bond market, it is still a little like the wild west out there. What does that mean? It means that there are no rules as of yet and some organizations and people are taking the opportunity to define on their own what a green bond is or is not.  For example if an oil refinery is looking for financing could you consider this a green bond?  What about a waste water treatment project?  what about if the funding is used for general “green” projects which are yet to be defined?

Bonds are of course one method for getting financing for your project.  What this means is that most of the organizations and people involved in bond financing are only interested in the interest rate, the yield, the tenor and the risks associated with the underlying investment and how well it matches with the rate being charged and how well it fits the needs or gaps of the buyers portfolio.  In addition, they are also interested in the liquidity of the investment, is there another market ( a secondary market) where once the bond has been issued by the sponsoring financial organization the bond can be sold to another buyer.  The questions is is how many of these green bond financiers both from the buy side and the sell side are interested in the green – supposed – benefits of the projects being funded by the green bond.

The question is what is a green bond and what makes it green?  Is a green bond which is used to pay for a new subway a green bond?  No-one would argue that a subway will move people from cars meaning less fuel burned and less greenhouse gas emissions particularly if the electricity powering the subway is clean (and does not include any coal).  That is the situation in Ontario where the the Ontario government issued a green bond to pay for the construction of a subway line in Toronto. Do they need a green  bond for this?  They government would have probably financed this with a bond regardless.  Does this mean that the subway will be “greener” than otherwise because it is now financed with a green bond? What are the differences between a normal bond and green bond?  Is there a lower interest rate for the borrower  or any sort of preferred terms?  I suspect not and if not then the financing is the same and what is the label “green” for. In this case, the answer could be marketing and branding?

If we look at green bonds through the lens of greenwashing…what do we find?  Sustainable brands has a good set of guidelines for if your ecofriendly products are green washing.  As sustainable brands says at least 95% of products are guilty of breaking at least one of the sins of greenwashing.  Let’s see look at green bonds …

First the sevens sins as shown below are taken straight from here.

  1. Hidden Trade-Off: Labeling a product as environmentally friendly based on a small set of attributes (e.g., made of recycled content) when other attributes not addressed (e.g., energy use of manufacturing, gas emissions, etc.) might make a bigger impact on the eco-friendliness of a product as a whole.

Green bonds – I would argue that some green bonds are being labelled based on one or a small set of attributes as opposed to looking at the entire product or the entire project that is being funded.  However, at the same time there are some projects funded by green bonds which are looking at many attributes.

VERDICT – Partially guilty

Stay tuned next week for the other sins of greenwashing and how green bonds rate!

Risk categories and assessing the risks of climate change on investments

Climate Change Risk Assessment Matrix

The generation foundation  (http://genfound.org/library/ ) has published a paper on stranded assets and the risks of climate change to companies and investments.  It identifies three primary risk categories for investments, regulation, market forces and socio-political pressures.  They are summarized as follows in the allocating capital for long term returns paper.

Risk 1 – Regulation: Pending and future changes in laws and regulations that would affect carbon-intensive business models can take at least four forms: (a) Direct regulation that is globally coordinated or led by local, provincial, national, regional supra-national, or global authorities; (b) Indirect regulation affecting carbon-intensive assets through restrictions on pollution or water use, and measures aimed at addressing health impacts;(c) Mandates on renewable energy adoption as well as efficiency standards; (d) Impending regulations that create uncertainty for long-lived carbon-intensive assets.

  1. Direct Regulation: Regardless of whether carbon pricing manifests as a coordinated global response to the Carbon Budget or is enforced through national, regional, state or local carbon pricing or ‘cap and trade schemes’, the result would be a material shift in the valuation of carbon-intensive assets over a short period of time and hence the stranding of carbon assets.
  2. Indirect regulation: Increased pollution control, water-use restrictions, or policies targeting health related concerns, indirect regulation could negatively impact carbon-intensive business models.
  3. Renewable Energy and Efficiency Mandates: Mandates on renewable energy adoption as well as the implementation of efficiency standards can lead to the accelerated development and adoption of alternatives to carbon-intensive assets.
  4. Impending Regulation: A significant overhang of other impending regulatory actions creates uncertainty for long-lived carbon-intensive assets, and is likely to add to the pressures that will increasingly drive capital away from those assets.

Risk 2: Market Forces: Renewable technologies are becoming economically competitive with traditional energy sources in a number of countries, without the need for subsidies, because costs continue to decline. Cost competitiveness, combined with the ability to secure stable, long-term prices for power, and produce electricity through a distributed model, are driving increased allocation of capital away from fossil fuels and towards renewables.

Risk 3 : Socio-political pressures : In the absence of regulation, sociopolitical pressures could create an environment where carbon intensive businesses could lose their license to operate.

A guess the analysis is at least one place to start. However, generally I do not find these particularly useful,  First of all the focus is on the risk of regulation and effectively five of the subcategories are related to the risk of regulation.

While there are many definitions of risk ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Risk ) oneof them is the probablility of an event happening times the impact of that event.  Assessing a particular investment simply based on the risk as outlined in the paper of the generation foundation does not tell us much.

Including a probability and impact assessment will address my other need for ensuring that some other risks including  the social values and license to operate receive more recognition.  This would be of course for companies and investments that are more exposed to these risks including companies which require infrastructure and/or rights of way to transmit / ship fossil fuel based energy.

In addition, in this risk analysis, there is no recognition of the costs of climate change to the business operations. How will the supply chain be affected, will there be increased shipping costs and other input costs, is the company exposed to any of the climate weather events that are starting to occur, will there be any costs associated with adapting to climate change etc.

The document also states a number of actions that investors should take,  One of these is that “at a minimum  investors should determine the extent to which carbon risk is embedded in their current and future investments. This can be achieved by considering the key drivers of a company’s asset base and revenue; reviewing the focus of its short- and long-term capital expenditure strategy; asking management how carbon risk might impact the company’s business model; and asking what steps have been taken – for example do they incorporate an unreported ‘shadow price’ on carbon when developing the business’ strategy?” (Generation Foundation. 2014. Stranded Carbon Assets – need to confirm the title). Using the risks identified in this paper, the risk analysis could look something like:

Stock Bond Project
Risk 1 – Regulation
Direct Regulation
Indirect Regulation
Mandates on Renewable energy adoption and efficiency
Impeding regulation that creates uncertainty
Risk 2: Market Forces
Renewable energy  price competitive
Risk 3 : Socio-political pressures
License to operate at risk

Including the probability and the impact:

In any one given scenario of the future when looking at the probability of that scenario as applied to one or more investments, the probability that regulation will take place should be the same. However the impact of that action will be different on the each option / investment / company.  Based on this analysis, the risk is effectively a proxy for the impact on a sector.

Only when assessing different political, economic and other scenarios would the probability vary.  For example, the probability of regulation would vary depending on which party was elected in that country or  the probability of a regulation would vary based on the which direction public opinion sits. In these cases, when looking at one investment in the two scenarios, while the probability would be different, the impacts of the regulation would be the same – again assuming only looking at the same investment across the two scenarios.

However, for sensitivity and resilience analysis comparing a set of investments across scenarios and applying a particular probability to a scenario may shed light on a better mix of set of investments based on analysis of a significant set of companies. Then investments could be made which are shown to be more resilient or have less risk than others in a world with potential for carbon regulation.  This would be similar to portfolio analysis done around other factors that can change and impact investments (e.g. interest rates, economic growth, sales targets etc.).

In addition much of the assessment will depend on the specific nature of the regulation.  For example will the carbon pricing regulation directly increase the price for producers or will it be applied at the consumption side.  Will it also be applied to fuel that is being exported or is that considered to be tariff-free? These details are not discussed and explored here.

In addition, in some cases these actions could have a negative or a positive impact.  This depends of course on the sector and the details of the regulation.

For example, if we used this risk assessment to assess a number of companies on a hypothetical level and very high level, here is what some of the results could be:

EV vehicle manufacturer/sales and distribution Fossil fuel Pipeline company
Risk 1 – Regulation
Direct Regulation Small negative impact:

Direct regulation would not directly affect the operations of the EV company but in locations where fossil fuels are burned to generate electricity, this could mean that the EV will cost more to fill up.

Medium negative Impact:

Since the pipeline company would be transporting fossil fuels, the demand for the fossil fuel could decrease based on the regulation.  This would not likely be a short term impact.

Indirect Regulation Zero impact Small negative impact:

Unlikely to have a greater impact that direct regulation

Mandates on Renewable energy adoption and efficiency Moderate positive impact: Depending on if the mandates including incentives for EV support.  Otherwise, small positive impact. Small negative impact:  Increased efficiency and renewable energy could affect demand and be a medium term impact.
Impeding regulation that creates uncertainty Small positive impact:

The threat of impending regulation could strengthen the business model of the EV company.

Small negative impact –

This would differ based on the fuel actually transported by the pipeline company

Risk 2: Market Forces
Renewable energy  price competitive Small positive impact:  Renewable energy could decrease the price of electricity making the case of EV vehicles stronger Small negative impact:  Where renewable energy directly competes with the fossil fuel energy in question. there could be a small decrease in demand.  However, different than electricity, there are no easy and scaled and readily available renewable alternatives to many fossil fuels in large amounts.  Biofuels and biomass are available but are also only available in small quantities.
Risk 3 : Socio-political pressures
License to operate at risk Zero impact: Small negative impact: While existing pipelines would continue to operate with little issue unless there was a spill, it would be difficult to get new pipelines and infrastructure

Ideas are free – Proposal for energy management training at Algonquin

I used to sit on all my ideas worried, concerned that someone else would steal them. Of course, with my day job and real life very few of these ideas went anywhere and occassionally someone else would come up with the same idea and maybe turn it into something.  In these cases, I was always ecstatic that an idea that I had once thought of actually was turned into something of value by someone else.  Sure I would have preferred to have turned it into something useful and interesting, but at least the idea did not sit in my head or on one of my many lists waiting for the day that would never come when I could devote the needed time and energy to actually move it along.

Now my new approach is to share my ideas with colleagues and peers and in my meetings as part of my networking. Set them free! If someone sees value in it and runs with it, Great! If they see value and run it and want to include me, even better!

So here is one idea and granted this one is not new although it may be new in the Ottawa community.

Training program in Energy management:

Rationale:

A set of events are coming togethor which are driving momentum to improve how we use energy in our homes and our work.  These include the continued increase, volatility and uncertainty in  energy prices, recognition and changing social expectations about addressing climate change and reducing  greenhouse gas emissions and as our energy use increases with more electronics and conveniences, there is interest in ensuring that we use our energy more efficiently.   Utilities also know that reducing energy use and investing in energy efficiently can reduce energy use and help to meet the growing demand much cheaper than building new energy infrastructure.  It is much cheaper to invest in energy efficiency in the electricity sector rather than trying to build nuclear power plants, natural gas generation in Ontario and large hydro.  Recognition is also growing that it is cheaper to reduce energy use and invest in efficiency in the fossil fuel sector rather than building new refineries, new pipelines to export crude oil or new LNG export terminals.

As well at the same time, new technologies are being created and being brought to market which will allow for the more efficient use of energy and enhance and preserve our quality of life. These opportunities have been recognised by entrepreneurs in the clean tech sector as well as traditional energy players as they are being forced to adapt to changes in the energy sector.

Skills are needed to understand the underlying technologies, understand where these technologies can be applied, understand how to describe the benefits and how to use the tools that are not developed to forecast, project, measure and verify that the energy savings will be delivered based on the promises made.  Technical skills are also needed to support the evaluation of the success of any energy efficiency investments using the suite of tools, technical understanding and experience that the individuals who graduate from this program will have.

Objective: Practical training and education that can lead to an undergraduate certificate in energy management, potential certification in IPMVP, continuing education units for PMI project management certificate, LEED  plus others.

This training could be part of a one year certification degree, a specialization within an existing degree or an add-on to an existing certificate. Thie could also link with any existing certificate programs asociaterd with green construction and/or advanced construction engineering degrees.

Qualified Individuals:

A need to drive investments in the energy efficiency sector is the need for qualified individuals who can do a number of interrelated jobs including:

  • go into a facility and building and understand the energy use,
  • understand the impacts of a retrofits of different technologies,
  • understand how to model different technologies and their impacts,
  • be able to ensure that after the building has been built or retrofitted it is operating optimally and be able to do a commissioning to support this,
  • be able to establish and operate a monitoring and verification program to be able to ensure that the building is functioning as intended.

In addition, to be able to understand and develop a business case and be able to articulate this business case is a needed skill for driving energy efficiency investments.  The skills that these individuals need are practical skills best delivered through a college diploma and certificate. Algonquin could develop a complete program which could train individuals with these skills to the marketplace. These skills are needed both for retrofits of existing building as well as building new energy efficient buildings and net zero buildings.  The sectors where these skills are mostly needed include commercial, institutional, industrial and residential.

Industry that has need of these skills include property managers, property developers, architects, architectural technologists, energy companies (utilities etc.), ESCO’s, engineering consultants.

The types of positions that these individuals would fill include energy managers, energy auditors, energy modellers, building commissioners, building inspectors.

It would also be useful skill development for existing trades including engineers, building inspectors, architects, planners, project managers etc.

Potential Courses:

  • Rationale: Why, business case for energy management and energy efficiency and retrofits
  • Introduction to energy management:
  • ISO 50001 Energy Management System
  • How to do energy audits
  • Benchmarking (see article at bottom)
  • Energy modelling (include RetScreen and others)
  • How to determine energy savings, greenhouse gas emission reductions, establish baselines etc.
  • Monitoring and verification
  • Commissioning and decommissioning
  • Financial Analysis
  • Potential sources of capital
  • How to sell energy efficiency
  • Practical application to a building on campus.

It just so happens that on the day that I was writing this up and preparing, I came across this press release from Algonquin College about a new Energy Management Graduate Certificate

I hope to be taking this around to people at Algonquin college in the next few weeks and working with a couple people who I know to push this ahead.  Comments and suggestions are welcome!