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REPORTING · 24th July 2010
Walter McFarlane
A conference call with David Dubois, the project coordinator of the Green Heat Initiative was the second of two presentations at the District of Kitimat’s Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday, July 19. Dubois explained the origin of the Green Heat Initiatives; using local biomass as heating fuel rather then propane and fuel oil.

“We’re looking to help facilitate the installation of 18 green heat systems and when we talk about green heat systems, we’re talking wood chips and wood pellets for heating of, not so much residential buildings, but more commercial and industrial institutional buildings,” said Dubois.

“We’re raising awareness about what Biomass heating is and the use of green heat and we’re doing some education on that. We’re looking as well to help the actual heating industry develop here in Northern British Columbia.”

Green Heat Initiative plans to go into communities and determine the community needs, look at resources and how communities can tap into them. Once projects have been identified they act as an independent information source, engage the community and become a support network. They are focused on biomass for heating rather then electricity generation as this is a long term program and they have a limited mandate.

The support they can give is to evaluate how much energy is being used and when it is being used. They determine how much biomass would be required to meet the need and use this information to create a feasibility study. All of this is free of charge as they are funded federally.

Dubois said he has talked to Mayor Joanne Monaghan in the past on the projects which Kitimat was working on at this time although he thought the ice grant funding was not gone. Monaghan confirmed the funding they had was not gone; they would know that week if they were successful. She asked how they would fit in with Pytrade if they went ahead. Dubois said his group would be an independent source of information such as verifying numbers.

Councillor Gerd Gottschling asked if the heat source would be able to assist the Hatchery and the Animal Shelter as heating the buildings would be costly. Dubois explained they would heat up water and pipe it out through heat exchangers. He added in Europe, they use radiating heating. It would also be possible to connect the animal shelter depending on the heating system.

Councillor Randy Halyk wanted to know if running pipelines around the community was costly. Dubois replied it was costly and the infrastructure could be owned by the company and depreciated over a longer timeline. The fuel could take any number of forms. He added there was a lot of maintenance but the money would go into and stay in the community.

Monaghan asked if they would look at these buildings free of charge. The answer was yes. She asked about an MOU with Terasen Gas which the Council was discussing in camera. Terasen would also do some feasibility studies. Dubois said Terasen is a business and Green Heat could do a pre feasibility study for Kitimat and then Terasen could use it, either from the District or from Green Heat to continue on the road to the project.

There were no further questions. Monaghan stated they would make a decision tonight or in the near future.