The City of Charlottetown has partnered with efficiencyPEI to officially launch and expand the Certified Sustainable Business certification program.
A successful pilot of the Certified Sustainable Business program was completed earlier this year, which saw three local companies receive certification and implement changes to make their business operation more sustainable. The partnership with efficiencyPEI and Island Waste Management Corporation (IWMC) allows the program to be more comprehensive in relation to energy and waste management categories and expands the City’s capacity to support the businesses that take part in the program.
This program is open to all Charlottetown businesses to participate on a voluntary basis. It is comprised of a checklist of sustainable practices that are reasonably attainable and worth striving for as they provide cost saving opportunities for the operation. If a business meets the required number of checklist items/points to be deemed a Charlottetown Certified Sustainable Business, it will receive a framed certificate and a window/door decal marking their status to display in the workplace for employees and patrons to see. Certified Sustainable Businesses will also benefit through promotional opportunities as well as ongoing training opportunities through efficiencyPEI. Making the changes recommended through the certification program can lower a business’s operating costs, minimize its impact on the environment, and maximize its positive impact on the community.
"This partnership with efficiencyPEI and IWMC has allowed us to make the program more robust and provide expanded opportunities for the business community to become certified as sustainable," said Mayor Clifford Lee.
"Through this program, we hope to demonstrate first-hand that businesses don’t have to choose between profitability and sustainability and that, in fact, the two go hand-in-hand. Sustainability is an advantage in business, and positively benefits the whole community. We encourage businesses to take part and work with us towards the universally beneficial goal of creating a more sustainable city."
Businesses that receive certification will be recognized by the City and the Province in a number of ways. Each month, a spotlight will be placed on one of Charlottetown’s sustainable businesses and they will be featured on social media accounts, on the City of Charlottetown’s website, and in printed media, with an additional description of what makes the business a star in sustainability. The objective of these features is to share best practices among Charlottetown businesses and to recognize the effort that businesses have made in their operations and in their community. The Sustainable Business Certification will show patrons and potential employees alike that local businesses have a sense of social and environmental responsibility.
"The Provincial Government sees great value in being aligned with the business community with regards to our sustainability and climate change goals," said PEI Minister of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Paula Biggar. "Buildings are responsible for 18 per cent of PEI’s greenhouse gas emissions and this program will allow us to begin expanding our energy efficiency goals to include local business. In most cases, energy efficiency upgrades require a low upfront investment and they produce substantial energy savings. This is not only important with regards to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, but it also contributes to making spaces more comfortable and will improve a business's bottom line."
"The Certified Sustainable Business program is another initiative that engages the community in the City’s sustainability goals," said Deputy Mayor Mike Duffy, Chair of the City’s Environment and Sustainability committee. "In the Integrated Community Sustainability Plan (ICSP) there are goals and actions in both the energy, and healthy economy sections that aim to raise awareness and empower the public to integrate efficiency into their lifestyle. The business community is of great importance to the City and we are excited to work with them to achieve our common goals."
Businesses that decide to participate in the program will receive a site visit from the CSB team who will perform a sustainability audit and provide feasible and relevant advice, specific to the business. To ensure that certified businesses really integrate sustainability into the organization’s culture, efficiencyPEI, IWMC, and the City of Charlottetown will provide free, engaging, and comprehensive efficiency and sustainability training to all, or a percentage of, the business’s employees. The audit is free and the program will help support the business in making the necessary changes to receive the certification.
For more information about this program visit: www.charlottetown.ca/CSB.php
Attached are the business profiles of the three that participated during the pilot project, along with the brochure for the program.
City of Charlottetown
Communications - Province of PEI