The Western Journal 2013 - (Page 32)

An Even Greener British Columbia By Michelle Morra-Carlisle T o the rest of Canada, British Columbians are already considered to be the country’s most forward-thinking citizens in terms of protecting the environment. Now a recent initiative is making it official. A not-for-profit provincial organization founded in February 2012, the Green Chamber of Commerce of BC (GCCBC) is endorsed by the Mechanical Contractors Association of BC (MCABC) and modelled after a similar group in the United States. Dana Taylor, Executive Vice President of the Mechanical Contractors Association of BC, first heard about the group in 2008 when he was attending an MCA America conference. The US association’s president at the time, David Kruse, was telling other mechanical contractors why he had initiated a Green Chamber of Commerce. He spoke specifically from a mechanical contractor’s perspective, which caught Taylor’s interest. Kruze told the audience that his company was already committed to green initiatives but that the existing chambers of commerce and other groups weren’t doing anything. In many cases they were even opposing the views of sustainability-minded people. So he and other business associates founded the Green Chamber of Commerce for the San Francisco Bay Area, the first of its kind in the USA. Taylor wondered if the same could happen in British Columbia. “My MCABC Board passed a motion to investigate the interest and opportunities for a similar organization here that would complement mechanical contractors’ green building opportunities and goals,” he says. Is sustainability a mechanical contractor’s responsibility? Taylor believes so. He realized it more than 20 years ago when he first started with MCA. He was personally involved in a community-based environmental group that was trying to stop a pulp mill, up the coast, from polluting the air and water. “Once the government gave the orders to correct some of this, all of the work—installation and retrofit – was being done by mechanical contractors. And I’ve since discovered that, many times, much of this work is done by them.” 32 For the general public, mechanical contracting generally isn’t the first occupation that comes to mind when green business comes up. And yet to use grey water produced in buildings for irrigation instead of going down the sewer, a mechanical contractor is required. If a single-family homeowner wants a LEED platinum building, a mechanical contactor is required. In many situations requiring a certain level of expertise in sustainability buildings, repairs and retrofits, this profession is usually the answer. As for exactly how “green” Canadian mechanical contractors are today, no one knows exactly. “The connection to green business from a marketing and promotion aspect is still not well known,” Taylor says, “although it is also true that purchasers of new and retrofitted buildings are demanding contractors to demonstrate their experience and accreditation in sustainability.” Antiquated attitudes saw “green” simply as a cost. But the premise of a Green Chamber of Commerce is to reflect what savvy businesses know today: that the sustainability issue has brought on a whole new economy with limitless opportunities for economic growth. The GCCBC refers to the three Ps: People, Profit, Planet. Sustainable business means making money, improving the environment for people, and saving the planet at the same time. The GCCBC aims to do no less than bridge the gap between traditional businesses and a green sustainable economy.  One of its main goals is to connect the construction industry and other associated trades organizations with like-minded businesses and individuals in support of a green economy. Membership services are designed to help break down the barriers between organizations, programs, services and businesses. The Chamber will facilitate collaboration, education on sustainable business development, information resources and networking. It also has a policy component, which will include the creation a “Green Standard” for products, services and businesses. Mechanical Contractors Associations of Alberta, B.C., Manitoba & Saskatchewan 2013 http://www.naylornetwork.com/mab-nxt

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Western Journal 2013

MCA Canada
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
Saskatchewan
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
Saskatchewan
Inspiring Innovation with Current and Future Students
Balancing Industry Growth with Environmental Concerns
An Even Greener British Columbia
Saskatchewan Immigration and the Mechanical Contracting Industry
MSCC : Discover Your Service-Specific Association
Helping To Shape the Talent of Tomorrow
A Living Breathing Building: VIDOInterVac
Index to Advertisers

The Western Journal 2013

http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0018
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0017
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0016
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0015
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0014
http://www.nxtbook.com/naylor/MABA/MABA0013
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/MABA0012
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/MABA0011
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/MABA0010
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/MABA0009
http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/naylor/MABA0008
http://www.nxtbookMEDIA.com