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CGA-BC Earns Climate Smart Seal of Approval


climate_smartVANCOUVER—August 24, 2011—CGA-BC’s efforts to track and reduce green house gas (GHG) emissions have been recognized by Climate Smart, which has confirmed the Association’s completion of the baseline year of the Climate Smart program.

Climate Smart Businesses Inc. reviews participating business’ inventories for adherence to the standards of the GHG Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard, and found that the Association met its principles of transparency, relevance, accuracy, consistency and completeness.

“We’re proud to accept the Climate Sector certificate of completion for our base year,” said Association CEO Gordon Ruth, FCGA. “We’re also pleased to be the first professional accounting body to be recognized by Climate Smart.”

“Energy waste in the small- and medium-sized enterprise sector hasn’t received the public attention of the big industrial companies or even the large public sector agencies,” noted Ruth, “but it’s a huge contributor to GHG emissions, and we are a part of that sector.

“CGAs pride themselves on being efficient fiscal managers and strategic business thinkers. The long-term consequences of the Climate Smart program just make sense—for our business, and for our environment.”

In order to successfully complete the Climate Smart program, participating businesses and organizations must: 1) complete a greenhouse gas emissions inventory according to the best practices taught in the Climate Smart workshops and work with the Climate Smart team during the inventory review process until the inventory is finalized, and 2) submit a list of reductions strategies they intend to pursue over the coming year.

CGA-BC has pursued several carbon reduction strategies and fully implemented several of them, including:
 

  • Offering public transit subsidy benefits to employees, and joining the Employer Pass Program, which offers an additional 15 per cent discount to employees
  • Allowing for work hours to be modified so employees can avoid peak traffic times
  • Engaging a firm to conduct an electrical and lighting systems review to reduce energy consumption
  • Outfitting the office with energy efficient light bulbs
  • Using Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper in all printers and copiers, as well as in publications such as Outlook magazine
  • Installing a filtered drinking water system to eliminate the use of plastic bottles
  • Recycling computers, laptops and hardware through an environmentally responsible third party
  • Introducing a nightly shutdown protocol for all non-essential electronics and lights
  • Setting up recycling bins at each workstation
  • Saving hundreds of thousands of sheets of paper by moving to e-brochures and e-flyers
  • Installing energy efficient power bars designed to detect when computers are asleep so connected peripherals can be powered off
  • Purchasing multi-tasking printers, fax, scanner & copiers to allow scanning and e-mail as alternatives to faxing;  employees can also set two-sided printing as their default
  • Offering several PD seminars on environmental concerns such as sustainability, corporate social responsibility, and making the move to a paperless office
  • Holding an Eco-Forum as a public service seminar in December 2011
  • Exploring composting to reduce office waste
  • Reviewing the use of local deliveries through Eco-courier, a courier service whose entire fleet of vehicles use hybrid fuel technology.

Earlier this summer, the Association partnered with BC Hydro to perform an energy audit of the CGA-BC Building at 1867 West Broadway.

“We’re working closely with BC Hydro to measure our energy usage,” said the Association’s Director of Administration Dan Cheetham, CGA.

“From there we’ll move to install energy efficient electrical equipment where such implementations will deliver optimal savings. Next we will introduce operational processes so that by altering our usage habits we will reduce electricity use.”

In 2009, Climate Smart incorporated as a social enterprise. It has since trained more than 300 businesses, worked with more than 20 host partners, and delivered programs outside Canada, and built a growing network of expert trainers.
 


About CGA-BC  

As the province’s largest professional accounting association, CGA-BC represents nearly 15,000 CGAs and students. Members work in industry, commerce, government and in public practice. The Association promotes the excellence of its members and advances the accounting profession through education, certification and the protection of the public interest.

CGA-BC leads the profession in the integration of ethics into its academic program, and all new graduates of the CGA program are required to complete a rules and standards course to complement an ongoing ethics requirement for members.

The Association also offers a wide range of employment services and programs to its members, students and the business community. These services include CGAjobs.org, a job postings website for finance and accounting professionals, and the Partners in Employment Program (PEP), which recognizes organizations that provide an effective working and training environment for CGAs and CGA students.

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For more information, contact:


Edward Downing, Director of Communications
Telephone: (604) 730-6208
E-mail: edowning@cga-bc.org 

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Certified General Accountants Association of British Columbia.
300 – 1867 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC V6J 5L4
T: 604.732.1211 TF 1 800.565.1211 F: 604.732.1252