Vancouver Regional Construction Association

Vancouver Regional Construction Association

February 23, 2012 12:00 ET

VRCA Launches Innovative Sustainable Construction Certification Program

Excellence in Sustainable Construction Program First of Its Kind in North America to Certify Construction Company, Rather Than Project

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Feb. 23, 2012) - To promote corporate sustainability strategies in the construction sector, Vancouver Regional Construction Association has launched the Excellence in Sustainable Construction (ESC) Certification Program, one of the first of its kind in North America to certify a construction company, rather than a construction project. The aim of the Association-developed program is to encourage the three pillars of sustainability within construction companies, finding synergies between profits, protecting the environment and supporting communities.

"The VRCA is extremely pleased to offer this industry-leading sustainable construction program with a focus on certifying the actual construction company, rather than a specific building or project," says Keith Sashaw, Vancouver Regional Construction Association President. "We feel certification will provide a tremendous competitive advantage to members who wish to pursue it, while fostering all three areas of sustainability among the industry. This is an approach we hope will grow beyond Vancouver and B.C."

Through the Excellence in Sustainable Construction program VRCA aims to encourage its members and the construction industry to integrate sustainability into products, processes, and practices. The certification program addresses the corporation's obligations, not just to the shareholders, but to the social and environmental initiatives of the businesses as well.

"As our industry faces new challenges related to climate change, natural resource depletion, reducing our carbon footprint, and energy independence we must move quickly to learn, understand, and thrive in a new set of environmental, social, and economic requirements," says Sashaw. "Our members are involved in many of these areas, from innovative technologies to robust community support programs, and this program will provide added industry-wide recognition to those activities."

Construction companies which participate in the Excellence in Sustainable Construction program will have access to tools and expertise that will help benchmark accomplishments and chart a course to improve performance. A third party auditor will review policies and practices to determine a company's sustainability score. Those who qualify will achieve an "ESC Certified" designation.

As of January 2012, 15 construction companies are registered in the ESC program. A pilot version of the program was initiated in July 2011, which resulted in four successful applicants: Scott Construction Group, Flynn Canada Ltd., Gerry Enns Contracting Ltd. and Lark Group. The four companies will receive ESC certification on February 23, 2012 at a launch and recognition event held at Van Dusen Botanical Garden.

With more than 700 members, VRCA is British Columbia's largest and most inclusive regional construction association, representing union and non-union, general and trade contracting companies, manufacturers, suppliers and other professionals throughout the Lower Mainland from Hope to Whistler.

VRCA has embedded sustainability within its organizational objectives and will encourage the industry to develop products, processes, and practices that contribute to a sustainable built environment. Its commitment to reduce the environmental impact and negative social consequences of our industry will be manifest in all future endeavors.

For more information, please visit www.sustainableconstruction.ca.

Contact Information

  • Vancouver Regional Construction Association
    Keith Sashaw
    604-294-3766 or 778-995-9946
    www.vrca.bc.ca

    Edelman
    Sunny McKechnie
    250-816-7610