Seeking Environmental Champions
If you are a small business with a spend of less than $50,000 on electricity and are interested in being awarded up to $25,000 towards your energy saving costs then why not nominate your business to be the next LiveSmart BC: Small Business Champion?
LiveSmart BC Champion Program
The LiveSmart BC: Small Business Champion Program will award funding to the small businesses that demonstrate leadership in their community by developing and implementing creative methods for energy.
This year’s the program is looking for two different types of Champions:
- Innovation Champions: Projects which use innovative methods for energy savings including:
- Installing new energy saving technology or equipment
- Using an existing energy saving technology in a new way
- Building retrofits which improve energy efficiency
- Creating on-site waste to energy conversion
- mplementing renewable energy sources
- Energy Efficiency Champions: Projects which use a combination of actions that result in improving your company’s energy efficiency by over 20%, including:
- Switching to renewable energy sources
- Improving the efficiency of you business location including: upgrading your exterior wall insulations, replacing window and doors etc
- Upgrading inefficient equipment
- Implementing employee behavior programs including changing thermostat settings, turning off lights and changing sleep mode settings of electronic equipment.
Your Champion Requirements
To be eligible for the LiveSmart BC: Small Business Champion Program your business must:
- Have submitted a Letter of Interest before March 21, 2012 and received an invitation to apply to the Champion Program
- Be located in BC
- Be a registered business with less than 50 employees
- Be privately owned and operated
- Have a commercial electrical account
- Spend less than $50,000 on electricity per year
- Have been in operation for at least two (2) years
The LiveSmart BC: Small Business Champion Program will award a maximum of 75% of the projects total value or $25,000, whichever is less. When applying for the program you must demonstrate how you will fund the remainder of the project. Funding can come from sources including:
- Your own investment
- A loan
- Funding from another municipal, federal or private grant program
- Utility incentives
- In-kind contributions
- Other funding partners
Funding cannot come from carbon offset funding.
On successfully being awarded the funding, you will be required to submit an average measurement of your annual energy consumption. You will then be required to submit two written reports on the project; the first when the project is 75% complete and the second one year after it has been completed.
- Description of the progress of the project
- Photographs of the project
- A financial statement of expenditure against the project’s original budget
- Copies of any permits obtained, if required
- Description of how you have or will share your project with your local community, including any advanced notice of media coverage or events
- A comparison of the original measurement of energy consumption submitted at the start of the project with the measurement at the time of Report 2.
- Summary of energy bills and monitoring data
- Description of how you have promoted your project within your industry and local community, including the number of events and a description of the events, copies of any published material and screen shots of any web pages
- Summary of the benefits and challenges of the project, its impact on the community, which local technologies and expertise were used, how many jobs were created as a result of the project and any lessons learnt from the project.
How to Apply
If you would like to apply to be a LiveSmart BC: Small Business Champion simply write a Letter of Interest stating your:
- Business Name
- Full Name and email address
- Whether you are applying under the Innovation Champion or Energy Efficiency Champion program
- A description of your project including how it will meet the criteria of the program in no more than one page of writing
Your Letter of Interest must be received by March 21, 2012 at 4:00pm either by email to Will.Yeh@gov.bc.ca or by mail to:
Will Yeh, Project Coordinator,
Ministry of Energy and Mines, Energy Efficiency Branch
4th Floor, 1810 Blanshard Street
Victoria, BC V8T 4J1
Once all Letter of Interests have been reviewed, successful candidates will be asked to submit a Champion application in April 2012.
How you will be Evaluated
All applications for the program will be assessed by the following criteria:
- Feasibility: How you have demonstrated capacity to successfully complete the project outlined in the proposal.
- Energy Savings: The forecasted amount of energy saved.
- Cost Efficiency: The forecasted amount of energy saved compared to the overall cost of the project.
- Innovation: How innovative the application is; whether it uses previously unknown or untried solutions. *
- Ability to Replicate: Whether the project is sustainable and can be replicated across other small businesses in BC.
- Benefits to the Community: The outreach of the project, including using local technologies and expertise to complete the project and potential opportunities to promote the project at speaking events.
*Only relevant to Innovation Champions.
Find out More
Visit the LiveSmart BC website to find out more information about this program.
If you have questions about the LiveSmart BC: Small Business Program, contact the LiveSmart BC help desk at 1-866-430-8765.
About The Author
This article was authored by a member of the Small Business BC team. When you find yourself asking "How do I...?" Give us a call. We'd be happy to help.
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