BC school boards to recapture carbon offset funds

April 10, 2012

BC school boards have succeeded in recapturing funds previously levied on them and distributed to the private sector.

Carbon offset fees charged to boards by the Pacific Carbon Trust will now be deposited with the Ministry of Education’s Energy Efficient Capital Account for the exclusive use by boards for energy-efficiency projects. This should amount to about $5 million for 2012/13.

In addition, schools and other public sector organizations will no longer be charged fees for access to the SMARTTool software used for carbon emissions inventory and reporting, saving public sector organizations about $850,000.

These reforms parallel a number of policy solutions suggested in the 2011 Centre for Civic Governance report “Catch $25,” which can be downloaded here. While the carbon offset reforms are an improvement, structural underfunding of school districts remains a barrier to maximizing energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions from BC schools.

For a Vancouver Sun story on the announcement, click here .