Energy and Emissions

As a rapidly growing, research-intensive campus, UBC is finding innovative ways to reduce energy and emissions. We’ve made significant strides towards achieving our ambitious greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets and continue to update and implement our award-winning Climate Action Plan and advance energy conservation and emissions reduction strategies across campus to achieve our sustainability goals while realizing cost savings.


  • Reduced emissions by over 7 per cent from 2007 levels through energy conservation in buildings.
  • Finished installation of a Heat Recovery Chiller in Life Sciences, reducing 500 tCO2e annually.
  • Continued to roll out our Building Tune-up program to re-commission over 70 buildings on campus, in partnership with BC Hydro.


  • Completed 90 per cent of the Academic District Energy System steam to hot water conversion project, replacing 14 km of aging steam piping and connecting 100 buildings to the more efficient hot water district energy system.
  • Began operation of the new 45 megawatt thermal high-efficiency Campus Energy Centre, which will replace the campus’ aging steam plant.
  • Completed the third full year of operation of our Bioenergy Research and Demonstration Facility, generating heat from renewable biomass and reducing campus emissions by 14 per cent.


  • Developed the first phase of the Climate Action Plan 2020, setting Demand Side Management targets and actions for 2020 and beyond.


  • Reduced emissions of our fleet by integrating alternative fuel infrastructure, including biofuel, electric vehicle charging stations, and a CNG fueling station.
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Spotlight Feature

Rapid growth and development of the UBC Okanagan campus has occurred in parallel with the establishment of greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets set by the Province of British Columbia.

In response, UBC Okanagan continues to strive to achieve sustainable energy performance from buildings—the primary source of the campus’ energy consumption and emissions portfolio— leading to the development of emission reduction strategies and the implementation of innovative building infrastructure and occupant engagement programs across campus.


  • Carbon Neutral Capital Program and routine capital
    funding of over $85,000 enabled the campus to
    strategically focus on building demand-side energy
    reduction through re-commissioning and continued
    optimization of academic facilities.
  • Completed implementation of energy conservation
    measures in remaining legacy buildings through the final
    phase of the UBC Okanagan/FortisBC partnered Building
    Optimization Program.
  • Completed lighting retrofits in Purcell residences,
    anticipating a 78 per cent reduction in electricity
    consumption related to common-space lighting.


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