Emission from Port Moody Recreation Complex need to be cooled for city to reach environmental targets

A list of the city’s worst facilities for emissions. image supplied

To reach its environmental targets, Port Moody needs to cool emissions coming from its recreation centre.

Among municipal-owned buildings, the Port Moody Recreation Complex is by far the biggest polluter, according to consultants performing energy audits on the city.

Lizz Hodgson, an engineer with Prism Engineering, said the current emissions coming from the building alone would surpass the city’s targets set for 2030.


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“It is possible to achieve your targets by 2030 and 2040, but the real key is that rec complex,” Hodgson said to council on June 20. 

The city has set an ambitious 80 percent emission-reduction target from 2017 levels by 2030; it aims to achieve net-zero emissions by 2040.

Prism has been studying the output of Port Moody’s 17 municipal-owned facilities as part of phase two of the city’s climate action implementation strategy, with the eventual goal of decarbonization.

They’ve also reported several pathways forward, but it’s not anticipated to be cheap.

Hodgson said that to achieve its 2030 targets, up to $5.8 million in capital spending will be needed; beyond 2030 to 2050, another $3 million to $3.6 million will be needed.

As part of the audit, a list of the worst municipal building emitters was provided.

The recreation centre accounts for 39% of the city’s buildings emissions portfolio – three times higher than the second worst polluter, the Westhill Community Centre.

Other top emitters include city hall, Rocky Point Pool, the firehalls and the public works yard.

Hodgson said the arena, ice rink and ice plant account for a lot of the energy use, but there are solutions related to heat recovery to reduce the overall consumption.

Heat recovery alone would reduce the recreation centre’s emissions by 66 percent, and the entire portfolio of buildings by 26 percent, she said.

While Prism is working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the city’s entire operation (vehicle fleet, lighting, water and sewer) the focus was on municipal buildings, which account for 54 percent of the city’s total output.

Hodgson said the implementation strategy is starting off with replacing old equipment with new low-carbon energy equipment.

However, she said it’s important to note that even with all the old equipment replaced by 2030, the city will not reach its targets due to the recreation centre’s emissions.

Multiple pathways were presented to council, but Hodgson said if the city wants to balance costs and even out capital spending over time, the 2030 target “isn’t really in the cards.”

“By 2030, you would achieve 50 percent reduction, and then your 80 percent reduction by 2039,” Hodgson said.

City staff said they would finalize the pathways created by Prism and come back with their own report to council containing more accurate budget figures for the capital projects.

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