By Jennifer N. Dienst, Contributing Editor
New solar panels make this sustainable space even greener
Calgary has long been known as Canada’s energy epicenter for a multitude of reasons — not only is the city the hub of the country’s oil and gas industry, it’s ranked the No. 1 “Eco City” on Mercer’s 2010 Quality of Living Survey. The Calgary TELUS Convention Centre is a prime example of the destination’s commitment to sustainability with its innovative environmental initiatives, including the recent addition of 10kW solar panels on the roof of the center’s North Building, which will significantly help lower the facility’s carbon footprint.
Completed this past summer, the solar-panel installation not only will reduce the facility’s draw on the provincial grid by 14,000 kilowatt-hours per year, it also will offset emissions by 11 tonnes — equivalent to removing two cars from the streets. The panels will even be viewable in real time online, where viewers can see exactly how much energy the panels are producing. Because Calgary receives more hours of sunshine annually than any other major Canadian city, the project is the perfect opportunity to not only take advantage of the area’s natural resources and save energy but also reduce costs for the groups that meet at the center.
Solar panels aren't the only way the center stays green. To maintain its BOMA Best Level 3 Certification, the center implements a range of ecofriendly initiatives, from an aggressive reduce, reuse, and recycle program to low-flow water fixtures and the use of green products and procedures whenever possible. And because the 122,000-squarefoot center is in the heart of the city, attendees can keep the green theme going by taking advantage of Calgary’s compact, walkable downtown. More than 1,100 hotel rooms are directly connected via indoor walkways to the center, and on adjacent Stephen Avenue, attendees can explore eclectic shops, restaurants, and Calgary’s original 19th-century sandstone buildings.
For more information: c algary TELUS convention centre — 403.261.8500 or 800.822.2697; firstname.lastname@example.org