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Capilano University gets its fleece on

A Capilano University employee keeps warm by wrapping herself in a soft fleece blanket provided through a unique program sponsored by BC Hydro and FortisBC.

Thursday, January 19, 2012
Contact:  Shelley Kean at 604.983.7596

(NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C.)—With many power-challenged communities in British Columbian feeling the pinch of Old Man Winter over the past few days, Capilano University has found an innovative way to stay warm while doing its part to conserve energy.

Get UR Fleece On is a unique campaign being run only at Capilano University where employees are given a free fleece blanket to wrap around their shoulders, lap or feet while at their desk. The university has handed out 200 blankets at its North Vancouver campus since the campaign began last December. That number is expected to grow once a new batch arrives and when the university’s regional campuses receive their share during the first week of February.

“We have continued to have an overwhelming response to this initiative and await another shipment to keep up with demand at all our campuses,” says the university’s energy manager, Laura Williams. “The energy management team is providing a fleece blanket free of charge to any employee, who is then encouraged to hand in their space heaters.”

BC Hydro and FortisBC have partnered with Capilano University to provide the blankets that are made from 100% recycled material. The ultimate goal is to eliminate all space heaters at all three campuses.

“Capilano University is striving to become an environmentally-responsible institution and actively promotes conservation-minded and sustainable behaviours among its students, employees, and the broader community,” Williams said. “Since the inception of energy management at Capilano University in August 2008, the institution has realized more than $424,000 in energy savings and raised more than $1.3 million in external funding (more than 50% coming from BC Hydro). The university is close to reaching its five-year goal of a 25% decrease in energy consumption, set in 2008.” 

In 2010, Cap’s buildings’ energy consumption represented 94% of its total greenhouse gas emissions. As the university strives towards continuing reductions to its carbon footprint, this will also result in decreasing costs for mandatory offset purchases, as required by LiveSmart BC, in order to be net zero. In 2010, carbon offsets cost Cap $54,000.

Capilano University is a learner-centred university that serves the communities of the Lower Mainland, Howe Sound, and the Sunshine Coast through campuses in North Vancouver, Squamish and Sechelt. Opened in 1968, enrolment today totals 7,500 students in credit programs each term with an additional 7,000 people taking non-credit courses annually. Capilano University offers a complete range of preparatory courses, university-level arts and science courses, business and management studies, creative and applied arts programs, health and human services programs, plus a range of services in support of student learning and success. Credentials awarded include bachelor degrees, associate degrees, post-baccalaureate diplomas, advanced diplomas, diplomas, certificates and statements of completion.



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