Dawson Creek Carbon Fund
The establishment of the Carbon Fund has allowed the City to put a price on their corporate carbon that is then made available to implement corporate and community emission reduction projects, with corporate emission reduction projects given first priority. These reductions are intended to help reduce the number of offsets the City purchases each year to achieve carbon neutrality.
Success Story Snapshot
|Energy Savings / GHG Reductions: Energy savings will be tied to the reduction potential of projects that are supported through the Carbon Fund.|
|Business case: By putting a price on carbon the City is developing an internal incentive to reduce corporate emissions and associated energy costs.|
|Co-benefits: The Carbon Fund supports investments in corporate and community projects, helps to drive the local green economy and assists in insulating the City from rising energy prices.|
Total project cost: The City initially established a charge of $100/tonne of corporate GHGs produced annually.
The City of Dawson Creek’s Carbon Fund (the Fund) is supporting the City’s Climate Action Charter commitments, including the goal to achieve corporate carbon neutrality by 2012. Approved by Council in June 2011, the Fund is established through the Dawson Creek Carbon Fund Policy, which allows the City to put a price on their corporate carbon emissions and then reinvest those funds back into projects that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Any corporate emissions that are remaining at the end of each year will be counterbalanced through the purchase of offsets, which are financed separately from the Fund. The City is committed to making every effort to implement feasible emission reduction projects before relying on offset purchases to achieve corporate carbon neutrality.
The City of Dawson Creek’s Carbon Fund allows the City to put a price on their corporate carbon emissions and then reinvest those funds back into projects that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Energy Savings/GHG reductions
Because the Fund has been established to invest in a range of emission reduction projects, it is difficult to predict the specific amount by which corporate emissions will be reduced within the City. The Fund policy does, however, establish a number of criteria for the selection of projects including the requirement that emission reductions from projects are real, measurable and permanent. The identification of potential projects is underway, and first priority will be given to those that reduce the City’s corporate greenhouse gas emissions.
The City initially established a charge of $100 per tonne of corporate GHGs produced annually. The investment is scheduled to increase by whichever is the greater of either $5 per year, or in accordance with increases in the BC Carbon Tax. The Fund is partially financed partly by grants received through the Climate Action Revenue Incentive Program (CARIP) with the balance being made up through contributions from the City’s general funds. The Fund currently holds an estimated $360,000.
- supports investments in corporate and community projects
- helps to drive the local green economy
- assists in insulating the City from rising energy prices
Three key lessons can be drawn from the establishment of the Carbon Fund:
- Political support is critical to ensuring that any public perception that the Fund may result in ‘paying extra’ to achieve carbon neutrality is managed, and that the Fund is seen as demonstrating the City’s commitment to climate action
- Clear and consistent communication with Council on the opportunities that can be derived from Fund investments in local government infrastructure can assist in building support and interest
- As significant resources accumulate, ensuring that there is a process in place to select projects will ensure consistency and transparency in the use of the Fund
- Dawson Creek Carbon Fund Policy
- BC Climate Action Toolkit: Annual Budget - Holistic Planning
- BC Climate Action Toolkit: The Business Case for Climate Action
- BC Climate Action Toolkit: Carbon Neutral Local Government
- District of Saanich Carbon Fund
- District of Squamish – Carbon Neutral Reserve Fund BYLAW NO. 2079, 2008
- City of Prince George “Our Path to Carbon Neutrality” (2010)
- Salt Spring Island “Potential Climate Actions for Salt Spring Island” (2010)
- City of Kelowna – Report to Council, Corporate Energy and GHG Reduction Plan (2012)