The list is curated by editors of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers project and recognizes employers that feature unique environmental initiatives an programs, have had success in reducing their carbon footprint, enjoy employee involvement, as well as the extent to which these initiatives are linked to the employer’s public identity. UNBC is one of six universities on the list.
The 2016 Canada’s Greenest Employers website lists several reasons for UNBC’s selection:
• UNBC maintains a Green University Planning Committee comprised of senior administrators, faculty members, students and campus groups, as well as a number of green sub-committees that address specific areas of interest, including energy, carbon neutrality, teaching and food — the university also maintains the Green University Centre, home to four full-time personnel and a part-time student dedicated to various green initiatives on campus and in the wider region;
• UNBC manages a unique “Green Fund” dedicated to funding various sustainability projects across the campus, from retrofitting the campus pub with LED lighting to a student-led research project on identifying suitable renewable energy options for all UNBC locations — the fund is supported by parking revenues and a total of $50,000 is available each academic year;
• UNBC operates a unique biomass gasification facility that uses wood residue from a local sawmill to produce clean renewable energy — the facility achieved the impressive LEED Platinum certification standard and heats the main buildings of the university’s Prince George campus as well as reduces demand for fossil fuel heating by 85 percent.
“Our employees and students have a passion for sustainability, and we see their passion demonstrated daily around our campus. Their efforts mean that not only are we an environmental champion, but we do things that allow us to operate more efficiently as well,” says UNBC President Daniel Weeks. “To be named one of Canada’s Greenest Employers for the fifth consecutive year is something of which we should all be very proud.”
Earlier this year, UNBC was also named one of B.C.’s Top Employers, recognizing generous parental leave programs, promoting balanced professional and personal lives, and making it easy for employees to further their education.