Climate Change & Energy Efficiency

How are Climate Change and Energy Efficiency Related?

Although climate change can be caused by both natural processes and human activities, recent warming is largely attributed to human activity, primarily the release of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. These gases enhance the insulating properties of the atmosphere, reducing heat loss, thereby warming the planet. Continued emission of these gases is the primary cause for concern about climate change now and into the immediate future. Particularly important is the emission of carbon dioxide, which is released through the combustion of carbon-based fossil fuels. In Canada, over 80 % of total national greenhouse gas emissions are associated with the production or consumption of fossil fuels for energy purposes.

Because much of the increase in greenhouse gas emissions is a result of burning fossil fuels for energy, energy efficiency has a key role in tackling climate change. By using energy more wisely, we need less energy to fulfill our needs. Energy efficiency can lower energy costs, reduce local air pollutants such as small particulate matter, and make our homes and buildings more comfortable.

In 2013, Council adopted the Climate Action and Energy Plan (CAEP), a plan which identifies opportunities to reduce North Cowichan's energy consumption and emissions through community actions, policy and other municipal mechanisms. We are now in the implementation phase of an exciting project that will help guide the future of land use, local economy, energy use, and emission reductions in our community.  The Climate Action and Energy Plan is helping North Cowichan lower its energy and carbon footprint while improving the local economy and quality of life for residents and visitors.

Find out what you can do to reduce your household energy consumption.