More than $300,000 is being invested in Ecotrust Canada’s Prince Rupert branch as part of a $4.2 million investment to recruit, train, and mentor new energy advisors, the federal government announced on April 6.
The federal investments will support the delivery of energy advisor training programs to prepare candidates. They will also provide practical hands-on training and mentorship opportunities to candidates and newly registered energy advisors. A special focus will be to attract minority groups to train and pass the exams required to enter the profession.
“We’re encouraging people from underrepresented groups into the energy advisor profession, including Indigenous Peoples, women, persons with disabilities, racialized individuals, and individuals who identify as 2SLGBTQIA+ to apply and they will be prioritized in the selection process,” Ecotrust Canada stated.
“This project will help rural and Indigenous communities across B.C.’s coast to reduce energy use and emissions, save money, and access the Greener Homes program funding,” Graham Anderson, director of community energy, Ecotrust Canada, said
The funding is part of a greater $10 million call for proposals to train up to an additional 2,000 energy advisors, said Julie Dabrusin, parliamentary secretary to the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, in the statement.
After launching the Canada Greener Homes Grant initiative in May 2021 to help 700,000 Canadians upgrade heating and energy resources in their homes in the fight against climate change, there has been a “major demand” for new energy advisors. The federal government said more than 180,000 applications had been received in just less than a year.
“Energy advisors are the backbone of the Canada Greener Homes Grant. To ensure retrofits improve a home’s energy efficiency and homeowners know about their retrofit options, an energy advisor must conduct a pre-retrofit and post-retrofit EnerGuide home energy evaluation,” the statement read.
“Ecotrust Canada is a Canadian charity with a vision to build an economy that provides for life … We are grateful for the opportunity and welcome people interested in training to be in touch through the application form on our website,” Anderson said. “Our target area will include communities across BC’s North and Central Coast, as well as North Vancouver Island and Qathet Regional District.”
Through a partnership with an established Energy Advisor Service Organization, Ecotrust will recruit, train, and mentor people from rural and Indigenous communities across Coastal BC to become certified energy advisors
“We will then provide support and coordination for households across the region to access energy advisor services from their local energy advisors. This project will help rural and Indigenous communities across BC’s coast to reduce energy use and emissions, save money, and access the Greener Homes program funding,” Anderson said.
Buildings and homes account for 18 per cent of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions, so retrofitting existing homes with the help of energy advisors is one of the most effective ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the government stated. According to the International Energy Agency, energy-efficient measure could get the world one-third of the way toward the Paris 2030 targets and reach net zero emissions by 2050.
The other investments as part of the $4.2 million include:
$1.15 million to SaskPower in Regina, Saskatchewan; $681,000 to the Confederation College of Applied Arts and Technology in Thunder Bay, Ontario; $675,000 to NorQuest College in Edmonton, Alberta; $624,000 to the Government of Yukon in Whitehorse, Yukon; $359,000 to the Canadian Institute for Energy Training in Toronto, Ontario; $227,000 to EnviroCentre in Ottawa, Ontario; and $190,000 to the Ecofitt Corporation in Newfoundland and Labrador.
K-J Millar | Editor and Multi-Media Journalist
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