(photo courtesy Georgian Bay Biosphere Reserve)
Residents in the Parry Sound area can now use a carbon calculator tool to calculate the amount of greenhouse gas emissions they produce.
In a press release of Tuesday, the Integrated Community Energy and Climate Action Plans (ICECAP) project announced its development of a carbon calculator tool that was specifically made for the Georgian Bay Biosphere region.
The carbon calculator allows homeowners, seasonal residents, and businesses to calculate the GHG emissions produced by their buildings, vehicles, and waste.
With a short 15-minute survey, users can calculate their GHG emissions by inputting their building’s energy use, the types of vehicles they own and the distance they drive, as well as the amount of monthly garbage produced.
Manager of Information and Technology for the Town of Parry Sound and ICECAP Co-Chair Forrest Pengra says the calculator has significant value and will be used by the membership for Corporate milestones as well as by the public for Community milestone requirements.
“The information will be invaluable for estimating energy usage as it relates to greenhouse gas emissions specific to our region,” Pengra said. “Further, it may be possible to use the baseline information to adjust standardized baseline data for improved analysis accuracy.”
It also includes the use of recreation vehicles – which makes the carbon calculator different from other similar tools, as emissions produced by recreational vehicles are often left out.
Climate Change and Energy Specialist at the Georgian Bay Biosphere Benjamin John says that in the past, the region has some interesting and unique energy consumption patterns.
“Because of this uniqueness, there are a number of data gaps that need to be filled in order to create a stronger understanding of the annual GHG emissions produced in our region. This tool will assist in filling data gaps, provide users with a fun and engaging educational experience, and offer insight into appropriate approaches to climate change and energy planning for our region.”
The data collected will help monitor local energy and GHG emission trends, develop energy and GHG emission baselines and identify opportunities for energy efficiency and cost savings.
Councillor for the Township of Seguin and ICECAP Co-Chair Daryle Moffat says it will also help ICECAP work together on climate action planning in the region.
“The ICECAP partnership will be crucial in identifying opportunities for mitigation and bringing adaptation into the conversation. These discussions for adaptation strategies will outline how to deal with new impacts and the uncertainties that climate change presents.”
Additionally, a new charging station has been added to the Town of Parry Sound and can be found at 119 Bowes Street.
You can complete the carbon calculator by heading here