Town of Athabasca: Athabasca Regional Multiplex REALice Retrofit

This project was funded through the Recreation Energy Conservation Program

Town of Athabasca

2022Completion Year

$35,181Project Cost

$3403.96Cost Savings

$26,385.75MCCAC Funding

2.6Simple Payback Period

22,837kWh/yearElectrical Energy Savings

97GJ/yearNatural Gas Energy Savings

17tonnes CO2e/yearGHG Reductions

Greenhouse gas emissions reductions for this project are calculated based on Alberta’s Carbon Offset Emission Factors Handbook Version 2.0


As part of the MCCAC’s Recreation Energy Conservation (REC) program, the Town of Athabasca installed a REALice system at the Regional Multiplex. Located in the town of Athabasca, the Athabasca Regional Multiplex facility has 2 storeys and was constructed in 2008 with an additional pool area constructed in 2019. It has an approximate total floor area of 11,596 m² and fenestration (window and door) of 11%. The facility has a curling rink, a hockey rink, a field house, and a swimming pool. As well, the building has offices, common areas, conference/activity rooms, a concession kitchen, fitness area, washrooms, and a daycare. REALice-treated water eliminates the need to use heated water when building or resurfacing your ice and reduces compressor loads. The system has no moving parts and is easily integrated into existing piping systems.               

This project was commissioned in April 2022.


This newly installed REALice system will help to reduce the costs of heating the water used to resurface the ice as well as the electricity costs associated with cooling the ice following resurfacing. This system eliminates the need for hot water when building and resurfacing ice by removing micro air bubbles from the incoming water resulting in lower natural gas consumption from water heaters and less load on compressors.


The REALice installation resulted in a reduction of 17 tCO2/year and an energy cost saving of $3,403.96/year. The system enabled the water heater setpoint temperature to be dropped from 140 F to 110 F. The project resulted in an 8% GHG reduction from the existing system and a 1% reduction facility-wide from the baseline.

““With REALice, the community will be saving money and reducing our greenhouse gas emission footprint,” says Balay. “That’s good for taxpayers, the environment, and user groups. The Town is finding ways to reduce costs and make our facilities more sustainable. For the Athabasca Regional Multiplex, going to cold floodwater technology makes sense.”

Athabasca Mayor – Robert Balay

“After salaries, a recreation facility’s biggest operational cost is energy. REALice, is maintenance-free, has an expected life of at least 25 years, was a very easy install, will have a meaningful impact on costs, and will reduce CO2 emissions for years to come.”

Municipal Energy Manager – Kevin Jacobs


Read more about the Recreation Energy Conservation Program