Every dollar counts. The Action Centre programs support all Alberta municipalities, school authorities and non-profits in their efforts to reduce costs while supporting strong communities.

Since 2009, the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre – a partnership of the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association, the Rural Municipalities of Alberta, and the Government of Alberta – has helped Alberta municipalities, non-profit organizations, and school authorities implement energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions.

This year, the partnership won an Alberta Emerald Award recognizing the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre initiative. Watch the Emerald Documentary Series video featuring the Action Centre team and footage from across Alberta.

Despite the challenges we all faced in 2020, municipalities, non-profit organizations, and school authorities continued to participate in the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre’s programs. Participants reduced operating costs, decreased greenhouse gas emissions, and supported local job creation in Alberta.

Here we highlight how our program participants are benefiting from energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives.

Renewable Energy

Alberta Municipal Solar Program

In 2020, the Alberta Municipal Solar Program almost doubled its amount of solar energy capacity installed since launch, increasing from 10MW to 19MW.

The Village of Carmangay is creating a sustainable community for all. They completed a solar PV installation with Alberta Municipal Solar Program funding.

Community Generation Capacity Building Program

Twelve organizations received funding from the Community Generation Capacity Building Program and completed technical development activities, partnership development activities, and tools and training.

Municipal Community Generation Challenge

Two municipalities were selected as winners of the Municipal Community Generation Challenge:

Solar for Schools Program

Five school authorities installed 12 solar PV projects at schools across Alberta with funding from the Solar for Schools Program. Read our case study to learn how Canadian Rockies School Division installed solar PV on two of their schools that will achieve an estimated $23,943 in avoided energy costs per year.

“AUMA is proud to support strong, resilient and thriving communities. Through the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre, we’ve enabled municipalities to implement solutions to meet the needs of our changing world. In 2020, we’ve seen a number of large projects come to completion, enabling communities to become close, if not completely, electrically net zero.”

Barry Morishita, President,
Alberta Urban Municipalities Association

Energy Efficiency

Recreation Energy Conservation Program

Since launching the Recreation Energy Conservation Program in 2019, 82 projects have been completed by 69 municipalities across Alberta. Sixty-three percent of the projects funded scoping audits or engineering studies and thirty-seven percent of projects funded implementation of energy-efficient upgrades to recreation facilities.

Learn how Town of Rocky Mountain House installed a combined heat and power system and two high efficiency boilers at their Town Aquatic Centre, reducing their utility bill by half.

Municipal Energy Manager Program

In the first year of the Municipal Energy Manager Program, eleven energy managers were hired serving 14 municipalities. These energy managers are reducing municipal building energy consumption and saving municipalities money on operational costs.

Tip: Municipalities can share an energy manager with their neighbours.

Foothills County hired Adeniyi Adeaga to be their Municipal Energy Manager with funding that covered 80% of his salary.

Learn how Adeniyi Adeaga, Municipal Energy Manager, Foothills County is managing energy use and finding ways to reduce operational costs on a tight budget. He’s even applying for funding through other Action Centre programs.

Electric Vehicles for Municipalities Program

Twenty-two electric vehicles were purchased by 16 municipalities through the Electric Vehicles for Municipalities Program. Vehicles included low speed and non-road vehicles, such as electric ATVs and electric ice resurfacers.

“When we partnered to open the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre over 10 years ago, our vision was to help municipalities address a changing climate and find cost savings. Since then, we are proud to see over 600 projects completed.”

Paul McLauchlin, President, Rural Municipalities of Alberta

Advisory Services

Partners for Climate Protection Program

In 2019, the Action Centre became that Regional Climate Advisor for the Partners for Climate Protection Program, run in partnership with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and ICLEI Canada. The program is milestone-based, aimed at moving municipalities from climate action planning to implementation.

Since January 2020, five Partners for Climate Protection Program member municipalities have completed nine milestones.

Municipal Energy Champions Program

After completing the pilot, we launched the Municipal Energy Champions Program, a new advisory service for small municipalities. Six municipalities participated in the pilot program. In October, nine more municipalities were welcomed to our second cohort.

Looking forward to 2021

“Municipalities in Alberta are actively preparing for a changing climate. Over the past year, they have demonstrated leadership by investing resources into solutions. Municipalities, school authorities, and community organizations have improved their resiliency and supported economic growth with Action Centre programs.”

Trina Innes, Executive Director,
Municipal Climate Change Action Centre

In Spring 2021, we are launching the Clean Energy Improvement Program and the Climate Adaptation Program.

The Clean Energy Improvement Program makes it easier for property owners to make energy efficiency or renewable energy upgrades to their properties through accessible financing.

The Climate Adaptation Program will enhance the ability of Alberta municipalities and Indigenous communities to prepare for and respond to climate-related risks.

Get started

To reduce energy consumption and generate electricity, please view the 2021 edition of the Alberta Funding Guide.

This guide consolidates all available funding programs for municipalities that want to boost their local economy through energy efficiency and renewable energy projects.

Tip: Municipalities can stack many of these funding opportunities with Action Centre funding.

Author: Hailey Gish, Outreach and Communications Coordinator

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Alberta municipalities and their community members are working tirelessly to improve the quality of life in their areas—and we work just as hard to support them every step of the way.

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