The first ever Comox Valley Sustainability Tour and Mini-Fair took place on September 24th 2017. The weather co-operated and we had an excellent turnout.
Here is a list of the Tour Sites:
(1) Mini Sustainability Fair – First Stop On The Sustainability Tour!
Edible Island Whole Foods Parking Lot (477 6th St. Courtenay)
Kick off you Tour and pick up your Tour Guide here! Stop by the Fair to learn about CVRD incentives to save on energy costs and water. Learn about ways to make your home more energy efficient and livable. Learn about fair trade for a better world, money saving energy audits and more.
(1) eBob Trailers
Edible Islands Whole Foods Market Parking Lot (477 6th St. Courtenay)
eBob Trailers are Canadian made electric Back-of-bike trailers with disc brakes, signal lights, lockable cargo space and long range 36 volt 20 amp hour lithium ion batteries. They attach to any bicycle that takes a trailer hitch.
With an increasing focus on personal and planetary health, eBobs could be the right product at the right time to empower more people to jump on their bikes and go for a ride.
(2) Project Watershed – Aquatic Habitat Improvement
489 Old Island Hwy, Courtenay (Simms Millenium Park)
Project Watershed has been working in Simms Millennium Park this summer to improve the habitat in the area for fish and other wildlife.
At this site, you will learn about Project Watershed and see the work they are doing to restore the Simms side channel used by species such as Coho salmon. The channel has not been functioning as well as it could be. In order to access the pond habitat, fish must pass through a long culvert which is perched high and only flows when the river and/or tide is high, thereby limiting access. In addition, the pond is a dead-end with no connection back to the river.
(3) State of the art Passive Solar Going up in Comox
1740 McDonald Rd. Comox
A very wise man/woman might—on seeing Tom Grimmer’s state-of-the-art passive solar home going up in Comox—declare that—at last—it has been proven beyond a doubt: what is good for the Earth is, indeed, good for the people of the Earth.
Or as Jennifer Thuncher of the Squamish Chief subtitles her article on the Grimmer home: “save energy, live healthier.”
You won’t want to miss this guided tour of the Grimmer passive solar home in construction.
Because this is a guided tour of the construction site there will be only 2 tours. One at 1:00pm and a second at 2:00pm. All visitors are welcome to drive by at other times but are not permitted on the construction site.
(4) Community Food Growers Co-op: Creating good soil, good relationships, good food and good fun
4745 Headquarters Road, Courtenay
Agriculture has brought people together in community since the dawning of civilization. The Community Food Growers Co-op –formerly Community Created Agriculture—seeks to rebuild those primordial relationships between growing healthy food and creating healthy communities.
Stop by this intensely gardened ¼ acre, meet some of the friendly and knowledgeable gardeners that come together to nurture soil, community and healthy food. Memberships in this agricultural coop are still available.
(5) Eatmore Sprouts & Greens
2604 Grieve Rd. Courtenay
Located in the Comox Valley, Eatmore Sprouts & Greens provides fresh, locally grown, certified organic sprouts year-round for healthy people and a healthier planet.
This Certified Organic Farm produces 8-10,000 lbs. of sprouts, greens and vegetables a week on 3.75 acres near Courtenay. Organic Certification is fundamental to Eatmore because it assures customers that its produce promotes healthy people on a healthy planet. Read More
(6) Amara Farm – Part of Merville Organics Cooperative
2641 Kirby Road, Courtenay
At Amara Farms growing and marketing healthy food is only part of their commitment to growing a sustaining and sustainable Comox Valley.
This stop on the Farm Cycle Tour is about more than just the organic garlic, vegetables and blueberries. It is, perhaps most interestingly and significantly about learning about Merville Organics, the cooperative effort of five Comox Valley organic growers that are working better by working together.
Be sure to ask about the geothermal and solar hot water as well as the mini vegetable oil refining that is part of a multidimensional commitment to a sustaining and sustainable community.
(7) Solar-Dynamic and Bio-Benign Home
3622 Brazier Road, Courtenay
Solar-Dynamic and Bio-Benign principles demonstrate technologies and lifestyle choices that can improve our quality of life, drastically reduce pollution including green house gas emissions, while creating affordable, healthy, secure, comfortable housing.
No matter what else you see and learn on the Sept. 24 Sustainability Tour, you won’t want to miss this Comox Valley home that offers a stand out example proving that we really can do sustainable and sustaining housing at an affordable price. Read More
(8) Photo electric panels eliminated summer hydro bills in Cumberland
3367 Egremont Rd. Cumberland
That the installation of solar photovoltaic panels on Andrew Sharrock’s garage roof in Cumberland went well was a given—installing solar panels is a large share of Andrew’s electrical business; Island Electric Ltd. But even he was astounded to see his electrical bills evaporate with the summer sun! The 2500 W solar array cost $7,000 to install and Andrew is planning to add more panels to start building up hydro credits to offset hydro costs incurred in winter.
According to Andrew, the investment will more than pay for itself over its lifetime.
This site is a drive by only. Andrew is very busy—installing solar panels!
(9) Cost Effective/energy efficient Solar Water Heater in Cumberland
3404 Primrose St. Cumberland
According to Cumberland homeowner, Eduardo Uranga, technological advances and lower equipment prices have made solar thermal energy a cost-effective choice for domestic water heating. The solar water heater at this home supplies hot water for four people over the summer and reduces his gas consumption to 0. The cost of the collector, including installation was $3,000.
According to Eduardo solar thermal for water heating is also a better economic/environmental choice than solar photovoltaic. Read More
(10) Creekside Commons where Community and Caring come before Cars
2202 Lambert Drive, Courtenay
At Creekside Commons cars are parked on the periphery of the property so people can enjoy the natural beauty and quiet of the landscaping and children are safe to run and play.
The architecture of the duplexes and common house incorporates steep sloped roofs and wide overhangs, which are ideal for the West Coast climate. Generous covered porches in front and back enhance opportunities for multi-season connection with neighbors and the outdoors. Read More
(11) Sustainable Home & Lifestyle
1130 Webdon Rd. Courtenay
This residence on the border between urban and rural Courtenay is a prime example of gracious home environment that goes with moving to a more sustainable home and lifestyle
The home of Andrew Gower and Camille Douglas features, grid tied in solar panels, ecologically based landscaping and garden, water conservation though rainwater collection and storage, a light well, and a bicycle parking rack for you to park your bike on! Planning for sustainability has a been part of everything they have done during the renovation, including minimizing construction waste. Read More
(12) Mowing to Growing: City Lot Grows Healthy Food and Lifestyle
708 12th St. Courtenay
For James McKerricher and his partner transforming their corner lot in the City of Courtenay into a dense productive garden has brought them a lot of fun, healthy food, and a considerable break from rising food costs.
While their garden contributes a large part of their food consumption during the summer, stored and preserved garden produce continues to feed them for months into the winter. It also makes for a rewarding connection to the community around. Read More
(13) Lake Trail School Garden: Growing healthy children and a healthy community
805 Willemar Avenue, Courtenay
Lake Trail School Garden is the foundation of Lake Trail Neighborhood Connections garden-to-table food education programs. Goals for the garden include producing a 3 season harvest of fresh delicious food for school food programs, providing educational opportunities around food security and sustainability to both students and the public, and bringing the community together to support the school and celebrate the seasonal abundance produced in the garden. Read More