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BC Green building initiatives get a boost with $150,000 in grants

BC Green building initiatives get a boost with $150,000 in grants

Real Estate Foundation of BC, Vancity provide funding through annual programs

Vancouver, BC, June 16, 2010:  Thanks to the Real Estate Foundation of BC and Vancity, five green building projects in Vancouver, Whistler and Vancouver Island are receiving grants totaling $150,000. These funds will help advance innovation and education efforts around building sustainably.

Established in 2004, the Green Building Grant Program annually supports organizations working on projects focusing on three main areas: innovative renovations or retrofits that reduce environmental impacts; investigating policy or regulatory changes for encouraging building green; and working on greater public awareness and education of green building strategies. Since its inception, the program has awarded 27 grants totaling $750,880.

”The Real Estate Foundation supports projects that make BC a better place to live by advancing the sustainable use and conservation of land,” says Jack Hall, Foundation Chair. “Green Building Grant projects are great examples of non-profits improving the sustainability of their own neighbourhoods and regions, and the province as a whole.”    

Vancity’s funding is part of the Shared Success program, where 30 per cent of annual net profits are directed back to members and their communities. Vancity’s strong financial performance in 2009 means $15.2 million will be reinvested this year through Shared Success.

“For Vancity this is not only an opportunity to support five important sustainability projects, it is also a great opportunity to leverage our efforts through this excellent partnership with the Real Estate Foundation,” says David Berge, SVP of Community Investment at Vancity.

The next deadline for grant applications will be January 24, 2011. Organizations interested in applying can check the websites at  or .

The 2009/2010 Green Building Grant recipients are:

  • Cascadia Region Green Building Council - $35,000for theirEco-Sense and the Future of Green Building initiative. This funding will help with researching and analyzing the green performance of the Eco-Sense home, an innovative and sustainable home located in the Highlands municipality of the Capital Regional District on Vancouver Island.
  • Environmental Youth Alliance  - $48,500 towards their Green Graffiti project that seeks to engage local citizens in the green building movement through the creation of green or living wall gardens. The Environmental Youth Alliance is partnering with BC Housing, UBC Green Skins Lab, and Streamline Enterprises to install living walls on four, low income residential buildings in communities across Vancouver. 
  • Tyee Solutions Society  - $43,200 for their Green from the Ground Up project that will bring together skilled professional journalists to research and write a nine-month series on the state of green building in BC, offering concrete and innovative ideas for ‘mainstreaming’ sustainable building practices. 
  • Vancouver Heritage Foundation - $12,000 to develop The Heritage and Sustainability Nexus, an evening lecture and one-day symposium featuring guest speaker, Richard Moe, President of the U.S. National Trust for Historic Preservation, along with other presentations to inform planners, elected officials, building officials, design professionals and the interested public.  
  • Whistler Centre for Sustainability - $11,300 towards the Meadow Park Sports Centre as a Living Laboratory initiativeto help educate Whistler residents and visitors alike about the energy retrofit of the Sports Centre and the associated benefits, as well as help fund a workshop to share their learnings with other local governments.

About Real Estate Foundation of British Columbia
The Real Estate Foundation of BC works to advance knowledge and practices leading to more sustainable use and conservation of land in BC through a variety of programs and initiatives, including its grants program. Since 1988 the Foundation has approved more than 1500 grants totaling over $56 million in communities throughout the province.

About Vancity

Vancity is Canadas largest credit union, with $14.4 billion in assets, more than 414,000 members, and 59 branches throughout Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Victoria and Squamish. Vancity is guided by a commitment to improving the quality of life in the communities where we live and work.

Media Contacts:

Real Estate Foundation of BC
Celina Owen
604.688.6800 ext 103

Vancity Media Relations
Stephanie Vicic