Selkirk College Participates in BC Cool Campus Challenge

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Selkirk College may be a small rural post-secondary, but the college community can help take on giants like UBC, SFU, BCIT and UVic to determine what school is the coolest in a contest that aims at reducing our environmental footprint.

Selkirk College is taking part in the BC Cool Campus Challenge, a province-wide initiative to reduce natural gas use this heating season.

Post-secondary institutions across the province are challenging each other to reduce natural gas use and encourage campus community members to commit to take energy conservation actions by signing the BC Cool Campus Pledge.

At Selkirk College this winter, Sweater Day will be part of the BC Cool Campus Challenge that has post-secondary institutions competing for who has the most people ready to commit to reducing energy use.

Institutions currently participating include: University of British Columbia, Simon Fraser University, British Columbia Institute of Technology, Selkirk College, University of Victoria and Thompson Rivers University. Public institutions have taken this opportunity to be community leaders and start a conversation on energy dependency and resiliency.

“This challenge is an example of how collaboration can address concerns about energy use,” says Selkirk College Sustainability Coordinator Laura Nessman. “Natural gas is a limited non-renewable resource. By reducing natural gas use, we can reduce our climate impact and demonstrate climate leadership.

Partcipation by College Community Required

Everyone wanting to take part can go to the Selkirk College website page where the online pledge form can be accessed. Simple actions like turning down the heat, wearing warmer clothing, taking shorter showers, and washing clothes in cold water all help to reduce natural gas use and lower our carbon footprint. If your home doesn't use natural gas, adopting these actions is still an excellent way to conserve energy. These small changes can have big impacts.

The winner of the BC Cool Campus Challenge will be the institution that collects the most online pledges from students, staff and faculty between January 7 and February 28 to save energy at their respective institution.

The winning institution will get a branded sweater or warm clothing item from each of the participating institutions. On behalf of the participating institutions, the winning team will donate all the warm clothing items to a local charitable organization to keep more people warm this heating season.

“Additionally, the winning institution wins bragging rights as the coolest campus in BC,” says Nessman, who would love to see Selkirk College succeed in this challenge.

The majority of the energy used on Selkirk College campuses is for heating and cooling systems. By turning down the heat, even by just a few degrees, significant amounts of energy are saved. To prepare for slightly lower temperatures in buildings, please wear warm layers as needed. A sweater is better.

Selkirk College is gearing up for the third annual Sweater Days held on the Silver King, Tenth Street and Castlegar campuses.

  • February 5 – Silver King Campus
  • February 6 – Tenth Street Campus
  • February 7 – Castlegar Campus

On Sweater Day 2017, the Castlegar Campus saved 11.3 GJ of energy. That’s almost a 25 per cent reduction for one day which is the carbon equivalent of comminuting daily from Nelson to Castlegar for one month.

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