Practical Solutions for Sustainable Cities — since 1969

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Upcoming events

28 Feb 2017 5:30 PM • 2305 West 7th Ave, Vancouver
08 Mar 2017 6:30 PM • 2305 West 7th Ave, Vancouver
14 Mar 2017 5:30 PM • Kits House: 2305 west 7th Ave, Vancouver
14 Mar 2017 6:00 PM • Various
15 Mar 2017 6:00 PM • Kitsilano Neighbourhood House (Kits House)
21 Mar 2017 6:00 PM • Various

One-Percent For The Planet

Energy Campaign


The health of our planet depends on reducing our energy consumption and shifting over to sustainable and renewable energy sources.

For over 30 years the SPEC has been committed to promoting energy conservation and renewable energy alternatives in the Georgia Basin.  We have opposed to new large-scale power generation infrastructure. Instead we worked to establish a successful Sustainability Demonstration Center which focused on educating the public about the benefits and feasibility of Solar Power generation.

We believe that the installation of solar energy generation systems on residential and commercial building makes good public policy sense.

Photovoltaic panels allow public buildings in particular to generate more of their own power.  These may be used in conjunction with wind generators or solar hot water panels. Here, the payback may be measured in two ways: in the dollars saved directly on energy costs and in the reduction in peak energy demands that could be achieved, thereby reducing or delaying the need to build new major power generation facilities. In areas serviced by BC Hydro, the cost of public power remains lower than the cost of photo-voltaic generation--at present energy prices.


SPEC’s Energy Committee works to educate individuals, businesses, communities, and children about renewable energy and energy saving methods to reduce their energy footprint. SPEC offers an opportunity for groups and individuals to view and learn about practical, long-term energy solutions to climate change. We also advocate at a municipal and provincial level for energy policies that move us toward energy conservation and responsible energy production. 

Current Projects

Municipal Best Practices for Solar

We are currently working with the City of Vancouver to adopt better policies for solar energy installations. We are asking them to look at best practices in other cities and adopt permitting policies similar to the cities of Toronto, Seattle and San Jose for Photovoltaic (PV) solar energy systems. As well we recommend reducing the cost of electrical permits for PV systems. For more information on this please click here.

We have also released research data on solar policies in municipalities across Canada.

Zero Fossil Fuels Campaign 

zero fossil fuels logo

The Zero Fossil Fuel Campaign raises awareness about the issues related to the use of fossil fuels in our community and educates people on how we could eliminate the use of all fossil fuels within the City of Vancouver. Zero fossil fuels is not a pipe dream. The Campaign highlights practical solutions that are already widely used around the world to eliminate the need for fossil fuels. The target audience is Vancouver residents and organizations.

                                                   Click to learn more about Zero Fossil Fuels Campaign

Check out our first video with local Eco-hero Doug Horn. Video by SPEC Energy team member Emily Chan


Carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere is reaching levels never experienced in humanity's history. Temperatures are on this rise, glaciers are melting, and storms are increasing in frequency and intensity. It is clear we need to significantly reduce our fossil fuel use if we are to avoid further catastrophic climatic consequences. The science tells us we need to decrease emissions by 80-90%. Is it possible to transform contemporary society from fossil fuel dependent to fossil fuel free? Vancouver 2020: A Fossil Fuel Free City is a series of short videos on how Vancouver can transition to a zero fossil fuel city by 2020. Through inspiring personal narratives, the video series communicates tangible examples to the public on how to make the transition from dirty fossil fuels to clean energy.

  • infographic

  • An infographic to quick and easily highlight the sources of carbon emissions in the City of Vancouver and solutions to eliminate those emissions.This component was funded by TD Friends of the Environment.

  • The Zero Fossil Fuels Toolkit offers some practical solutions for individuals, businesses, and communities to wean off dirty fossil fuels. Funding provided by Bullfrog Power and SPEC

  • go solar tours

  • The Go Solar Tours compliment SPEC's Zero Fossil Fuel campaign. Go Solar Tours offer individuals a unique opportunity to witness a fully-operating solar photovoltaic (PV) system up and close. SPEC offers guided tours of our solar PV panels on top of Mountain Equipment Coop (MEC) in Vancouver.

  • Click here to join a Go Solar Tour

  • Go Solar Tours are funded by Bullfrog Power and SPEC

  • Installation of SPEC's Solar Panels on the Mou
  • ntain Equipment Coop (MEC)
  • Vancouv
  • er Store's rooftop, for
  • energy generation and demonstration purposes.

  • Funding provided b
  • y Bullfrog Power, MEC
  • and SPEC.

  • A big thank you to our funders and supporters of the Zero Fossil Fuels & Go Solar Tour Campaigns:BChydro logo     Bullfrog logo    TD logoMEC logo

The Solar Photovoltaic System

SPEC's solar photovoltaic system has a new home. It has been relocated to the roof of the MEC store on West Broadway. A generous grant from Bullfrog Power helped to pay for the move and expansion of the system. The SPEC array was the first photovoltaic grid-tie system installed in the city of Vancouver. Since its installation in 2005 hundreds have followed SPEC's lead and installed grid-tie renewable energy systems all over BC. All of these systems help in small ways to make our energy supply more sustainable. This system is another example of how SPEC is demonstrating practical sustainability solutions in the urban environment.

Past Projects

Join the Energy Committee!

Email for more information on how you can be a part of this! Our Energy Committee meets on the second Wednesday of every month. See our event calendar for updates on meeting times and locations. 

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