The Government of Canada is providing an investment of approximately $530,000 from the Low Carbon Economy Fund to support a project that converts municipal waste into biomass energy in Banff, Alberta.

The Town of Banff will build a biomass district heating system that will see a cumulative reduction of about 6,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions over the lifetime of this project. That is equivalent to removing approximatively 1,800 cars from the road for one year by replacing natural gas with sustainable wood waste to heat four municipal buildings.

“Located in Canada’s first national park, the Town of Banff strives to be a model environmental community. With support from Environment and Climate Change Canada for projects like our biomass district heating system, we are making great strides in our transition to a low-carbon economy,” said Karen Sorenson, Mayor of Banff.

“This effort will save costs for our taxpayers, while helping protect the local natural environment that makes Banff so special. Locally, this project will grow as private-sector companies join our sustainable district heating system. At the same time, with four million visitors a year to Banff National Park, we believe our small community’s big actions to fight climate change can inspire individuals, organizations and countries around the world,” added Sorenson.

The $1.3-million biomass system will reduce the need to haul waste to the landfill. The funding is also helping to increase the solar electricity capacity to the buildings.

The federal funding for this investment comes from the Partnership stream of the Government of Canada’s Low Carbon Economy Challenge, which invests in projects that reduce carbon pollution, reduce costs, and create good jobs.

“Today’s announcement highlights some of the important work Canadian municipalities, like Banff, are doing to lead the charge and build a cleaner, healthier future. It’s leadership and good projects like the one announced today that will help Canada exceed its 2030 Paris Agreement target and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050,” said Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change.

The Town of Banff biomass district heating system will use a high-tech boiler to burn wood and wood chips that currently go to landfill and transport heated water through an underground pipe network to each building’s heat exchanger to provide heating or cooling, depending on the season. The advanced combustion chambers would produce extremely clean emissions, representing less than a single campfire. The project is intended to establish a breakthrough in Banff for biomass district heating, from which the technology can spread to other parts of the community. Cost savings and greenhouse gas reductions will grow as more buildings connect to the district heating system.

The Low Carbon Economy Fund is supporting energy-efficiency projects in provinces and territories across Canada.

For further information, visit: Low Carbon Economy Fund

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