Energy Management

“The sum of strategies to use the least amount of energy possible, while maintaining or improving comfort levels and environmental quality”

At UFV, our engagement in Energy Management stems from our ongoing commitment to sustainability and the environment, in line with the desire to reduce utility costs where possible. 

We remain committed to, and are actively pursuing, our Strategic Direction by assuming a position of environmental stewardship, leadership, and vision, not just in meeting our legislated mandates for GHG reduction targets, but also in the inspiration and enabling of environmental awareness and change in both student learning and campus growth. We continually strive to be energy efficient where ever economic and feasible, by design and retrofit through campus planning, through awareness and behavioural change within our learning community, and promoting initiatives and leadership inclusive of operations, curriculum and the engagement of our students and employees.

Energy Management News & Updates:

July 2017 - SEMP Report Published

The Sustainable Energy Management Plan Report for 2016/2017 supports UFV's commitment to energy efficiency and conservation by providing a framework for reducing energy consumption and its associated environmtal impact. Within the Report is an outline of the actions completed, the progress made, and plan moving forward to ensure our operations are as energy efficient as possible. The Report is located on the right side of this page, along with the previous version as well as other pertinent reports. Any questions or comments can be sent to the Energy Manager:

February 2017 - Get Your Fleece On!

In an effort to increase the comfort of staff and faculty while maintaining our commitment to energy efficiency throughout an unseasonably cold winter, Facilities and SustainableUFV have purchased 125 UFV branded fleece blankets (a cost covered entirely by BC Hydro). The blankets were rapidly requested by and delivered to those who found their workspaces to be consistently cool - but not before a rigerous selection process!
In order to qualify for a fleece blanket, requesters must have:

  • Ensured all windows in their space were closed
  • Utilized layers and/or sweaters
  • Submitted a work request form to address any HVAC deficiencies

Following that, if the problem persisted, a blanket was delivered with the understanding that they were to offset the use of space heaters, or turning up the thermostat in times of cooler temperatures. Space heaters in particular continue to wreak havoc on facilities management as we tend to blown breakers, witness safety hazards, and observe significantly higher energy consumption and poor efficiencies.

Nearly 50% of those who received a blanket have pledged to turn off their space heaters and/or to refrain from turning up the thermostat, and to use the blanket for passive personal temperature regulation.

We're looking to expand the Get Your Fleece On program later in 2017, and hoping for a warmer winter 2017/18.

November 2016 - Premier's Award Finalist - Carbon Neutral Government Program

The Premier's Award for Partnerships showcases and celebrates the work of outstanding joint-ventures or multi-party initiatives between BC public service organizations and organizations in the broader public sector.

November 2016 - Sweater Week - Turning Down the Heat, Turning Up the Style!

Saving energy and the environment by way of turning down the heat is a lot easier than you think! To heat UFV we utilize natural gas fired boilers which contribute to our carbon footprint and GHG emissions. All week long UFV students, staff and faculty were pulling on sweaters of all styles to keep warm as we lowered temperatures by 1 degree at the Abby Campus and reduced our natural gas consumption. Daily and grand prizes were handed out for submissions via twitter and Instagram @sustainableUFV,, and using the hashtag #UFVsweaterweek2016.

July 2016 - Summer Energy Contest - Win Prizes and Help the Environment!

Enter to win and support sustainability by sending us a selfie or a snapshot of you disconnecting your devices or powering down before you head out for holidays this summer. It’s easy and your chances are good! Post your pic to enter at or on twitter @sustainableUFV #UFVsummerselfie. Contest closed August 19th, 2016.

March 2016 - UFV hires Energy Manager

At UFV, the engagement in Energy Management stems from an ongoing commitment to sustainability and a focus on our environment, in line with the desire to reduce utility costs where possible. The benefits of energy management are well proven at UFV.

The hire of UFV’s Energy-Project Manager will continue to improve UFV’s commitment to a sustainable future by finding more solutions for UFV to reduce energy, energy waste and decrease its carbon footprint at all of its campuses over the years to come, as well as promote energy awareness throughout the university community.

Blair McFarlane comes to UFV following roles in Healthcare and K-12 Education. Blair can be reached at and 604-504-7111 ex. 4200.

June 2013- UFV has met and exceeded their energy reduction target 2.5 years early! 

In June 2013, UFV had reduced energy consumption by 10.6% compared to 2009/10 levels (adjusted for weather). The original target was to save 10% by 2014/15, and UFV achieved the target 2.5 years early! While this is a cause for celebration, there is still plenty more to do to reduce UFV's energy usage. 

June 2013 - Energy Management Video

Read more about the video here and click on the link below!

March 2013 - Last out, Lights off

Thank you for spreading the word about the ‘Last out? Lights off!’ campaign to colleagues and students during the week of the 18th March.

As a part of the campaign we accomplished:

  • 250 signed pledges from students, staff and faculty to turn off the lights when they’re the last out – see photo below from our booth;
  • 100 posters next to light switches reminded us to turn out the lights; and
  • 100 reminder cards for instructor desks prompted students to turn off the lights in classrooms.

Aug 2012 - Staff, Faculty and Student Welcome Back BBQs

Sam Thomas, Energy Manager, and Green Team members attended three welcome back events in August and September.  Sasq'ets, UFV's mascot, joined them in handing out cookies, promoting the green pledge and reminding everyone to turn it off!

July 2012 - UFV Staff and Faculty Green Team

‌For a PDF copy of the presentation given at the latest meeting on July 19th 2012, click here (allow half a minute to download).  To find out how to get involved with the Staff and Faculty Green Team click here.

March 26 - 30, 2012 - TURN IT OFF WEEK

The last week of March 2012 was Turn It Off Week on campus.  The week was a success, with our "Caught Green Handed Campaign" (congratulations to prize winners), "Green Cupcake" event, media communication, and a surprise tour of the campus by none other than our furry mascot, Sasq'ets.  Thanks to all of those who got involved, and remember that just because the week is over, it doesn't mean you can stop turning off those lights!!  Keep up the good work and let's help make UFV green(er).

February 9th 2012 - National Sweater Day

Join UFV in supporting National Sweater Day. On Thursday February 9th wear your UGLY sweater to work, and be prepared for the heat to be turned down slightly in some areas.  Launched by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), this initiative raises awareness around the simple actions that can help to save energy and combat climate change every day.  After a hugely successful 2011 event, WWF will again celebrate National Sweater Day which calls for all Canadians to turn down the thermostat and put on a sweater for the day to show their commitment to the environment.

 While the sweaters represent the fun, turning down the thermostat is the key to National Sweater Day. Space heating is a major contributor to the changing climate. If every Canadian turned down their thermostat by two degrees Celsius each winter, 2.2 megatonnes of carbon dioxide could be saved every year - equivalent to taking 350,000 cars off the road, permanently.

So grab your ugly sweater and pull it on this Thursday 9th February at UFV to show how you do your bit for the environment.  For more information look for posters around campus, see Brought to you as part of the BC Hydro sponsored Workplace Conservation and Awareness Program for the UFV Abbotsford campus.

June 2011 - Programming change for gym air handling unit saves $7,000 per year

After a closer look at the programming code of a suspiciously behaving air handling unit for the new gymnasium, Energy Manager, Ken Holdren, identified an error in the outside air damper operation.  That is, considerably more outside air was being brought into the gymnasium than necessary, costing UFV an estimated $7,000 per year in additional heating load.  After a few programming changes by UFV's building controls contractor, this problem was rectified and the savings realized immediately.

May 2011 - UFV sets energy intensity reduction target of 10% over 5 years

As part of UFVs ongoing commitment to energy efficiency and conservation, the university has recently committed to reducing the Abbotsford campus energy intensity by 10% from 2009/2010 levels by the 2014/2015 fiscal year.  

This May, UFV released a Strategic Energy Management Plan (SEMP), which provides information on how and where energy is used on campus, as well as strategies for meeting the energy reduction target.  At this point in time the document and the reduction target focus on the Abbotsford Campus and Aerospace Center only, with other campuses to be included shortly.  See the link on the right-hand side of this page for a copy of the SEMP.

March 2011 - UFV Baker House takes 3rd place in energy efficiency challenge!

In March the Residents of UFV Baker House entered into a province wide energy efficiency challenge called ‘Do It In The Dark’, organized by the goBeyond Campus Climate Network.  UFV placed third out of eight participating institutions with a 20.1% reduction in electrical consumption in comparison to the February base-period (not normalized for weather).  First place with 29.4% in reduction was Okanagan College, with second place going to the University of Northern BC with 27.4% reduction.  

This is a great achievement, thanks to the efforts put forward by the Residents, Student Staff, and Professional Staff of UFV Baker House.  Thanks and appreciation is given to Lyle Yolkowski from Facilities for his assistance with meter readings.  A Stair Climbing Challenge was one of the initiatives used to help reduce electrical consumption, as well as reminders to turn out lights and turn down heaters when students leave their rooms.  BC Hydro also brought their Outreach program to Baker House at the beginning of the challenge to help spread the word about saving energy.

An online dashboard was set up for the challenge which shows results and standings.

Carbon Neutral Action Report (CNAR) 2016

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