By Marianne Curtis
In celebration of Earth Day, the province announced funding for three community-led projects expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including one in Otterburne.
On April 20 the province announced more than $295,000 in funding to support three community-led projects that will help reduce greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions in Manitoba by developing and implementing more energy efficient systems for heating and transportation.
The projects, which are being supported by the province’s Community Led Emissions Reduction (CLER) initiative Competitive Fund include the installation of a new biomass heating unit for buildings on the Providence College and Seminary campus, located in Otterburne.
Providence College president Gus Konkel says that the college is a leader when it comes to energy efficient campuses.
“What we want to do is set the example for what an institution may do in terms of initiatives to live more friendly with our earth,” says Konkel. “We have geothermal in our Reimer Centre and now we have the Biomass heating over here so, we’re very pleased for all those individuals that have helped make this possible.”
La Verendrye MLA Ron Lemieux made the funding announcement personally.
“These initiatives make good environmental sense and they make good
economic sense,” said Lemieux. “That’s why we’re working with communities across the province to support these innovative approaches toward increasing energy efficiency and cutting the greenhouse-gas emissions.”
RM of De Salaberry Reeve Ron Musick is also pleased with the project.
“We have to be serious about the health of this planet,” said Musick. “One by one, I believe these types of initiatives can only have a positive effect.”
The heating unit will burn waste straw or other biomass by-products’ from local suppliers, largely replacing natural-gas heating units. It is expected to heat upwards of 90% of the campus once the system is brought online at a cost savings of $50,000 per year in natural gas and reduce carbon emissions to just 180 tonnes per year.
Provindence College President Gus Konkel shows RM of De Salaberry reeve Ron Musick and La Verendrye MLA Ron Lemieux how the new biomass heating unit works.