Director of Community and Facilities Services Duane Lawrence with Mayor Lois Halko and the plaque the district received for the leisure centre retrofit.

Director of Community and Facilities Services Duane Lawrence with Mayor Lois Halko and the plaque the district received for the leisure centre retrofit.

District of Sparwood receives energy award for Leisure Centre retrofit

Last month, the District of Sparwood received an honourable mention at the 2014 Climate and Energy Action Awards.

Last month, the District of Sparwood received an honourable mention at the 2014 Climate and Energy Action Awards for their work in the energy retrofitting of the Pool & Leisure Centre.

The energy retrofit was applied to both the leisure side of the facility, which was completed in June 2014, and the arena side of the facility, which is nearing completion as of October 7.

“The facility is not an aging facility,” said Director of Community and Facilities Services Duane Lawrence, “but the infrastructure needed to run it was at the end of its life and it needed to be replaced.”

The leisure retrofit required the replacement of two dehumidification systems, two atmospheric boilers, and two hot water heaters with a state of the art dehumidification and heating system. The new system incorporated condensing boilers and heat pumps, as well as solar and high efficiency dehumidification systems.

The arena retrofit replaced 19 independent gas-fired appliances with two boilers. Those two boilers will heat domestic hot water and everything in the facility in a much smaller capacity.

The system was custom created just for the Sparwood pool and is a highly efficient system, according to Lawrence.

The funds for the $600,000 leisure retrofit and the $857,000 arena retrofit costs were mostly allocated from grants by the provincial (Community Recreation Program Grant provided $400,000) and federal (Infrastructure Canada provided $700,000) governments.

“The grants from the federal and provincial government made this project possible,” noted Lawrence. “Without those grant opportunities, we still would have had to replace the equipment but we would have had to do it one piece at a time and it wouldn’t have yielded as much energy savings as we would have from doing it all at once,” he added.

Not including the greenhouse gas emissions the retrofit has cut down on, the project is also expected to save the District of Sparwood between $70-90,000 of its energy expenditures, which currently totals upwards of $195,000 annually, according to Lawrence.

The Community Energy Association works in partnership with the Province of B.C., Union of BC Municipalities, BC Hydro and FortisBC to organize these annual awards.

“It’s appropriate to say that the award is for everyone who works in the District of Sparwood and at the leisure centre who made this project feasible,” said Lawrence.