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For Immediate Release

Feb. 4, 2011

Ministry of Energy





KELOWNA – Small businesses in the Okanagan and Kootenays can now upgrade to energy-efficient lighting systems at virtually no cost, thanks to a new program sponsored by the Province of British Columbia and FortisBC.


‘FLIP’ stands for the FortisBC/LiveSmartBC Lighting Installation Program. The $5-million program will arrange for and provide eligible small businesses with the direct installation of up to $5,500 in energy-efficient equipment such as lamps, occupancy sensors and controls.


 “FLIP is one of the first big initiatives to be funded from our LiveSmart BC: Small Business Program,” said Minister of Energy Steve Thomson. “We know small business owners are busy, and this program makes the installation of energy-efficient lighting as easy as possible. We’re starting here in the Okanagan but are working to extend these types of direct installation services right across B.C.”


“At FortisBC, we are committed to energy-efficiency programs that meet our customer’s current and future energy needs,” said Michael Mulcahy, executive vice president of customer and corporate services for FortisBC and Terasen Gas. “The potential to conserve energy within the small businesses sector is significant. By removing barriers such as upfront costs, we can address this underserved sector and create lasting benefits.”


The FLIP program is available to small and mid-size businesses that have spent less than $20,000 in electricity over the preceding 12 months. FortisBC-approved contractors will visit participating small businesses to perform lighting audits, identify potential upgrades, and schedule licensed electricians to install the equipment and systems. 


The average small business is expected to save nearly 8,000 kilowatt hours per year, or more than $800 annually. The FLIP program hopes to reach 1,000 small businesses over the next two years and reduce total electricity use by nearly nine gigawatt hours – enough electricity to power 450 small businesses annually.


Businesses must be within the FortisBC service area, a municipal electric customer of Grand Forks, Kelowna, Penticton, Summerland and Nelson Hydro or located in West Kelowna, Peachland, Central and East Kootenays (Slocan Valley, Cranbrook, Fernie, Kimberly and Invermere).



            For more information about the FortisBC/LiveSmart Lighting Installation Program, call
1-866-932-8283 or email For more energy efficiency and power outage tips, visit or call the toll free number at 1-866-4FORTIS (1-866-436-7847).

About LiveSmart BC

LiveSmart BC programs help British Columbians make green choices to save money at home, on the road and at work. Most recently, LiveSmart BC launched a $15-million, three-year Small Business program tailored to meet the needs of key sectors such as accommodations, retail, restaurants, agriculture and business offices. There are four components to the program: business energy advisors, direct installation programs, enhanced product incentives and funding for innovative energy reduction solutions.  For more information visit  

About FortisBC
FortisBC Inc. is an integrated regulated electric utility based in Kelowna, British Columbia. Focused on the safe delivery of reliable and cost-effective electricity, FortisBC serves approximately 160,000 customers directly and indirectly through wholesale utilities in the southern interior of B.C. FortisBC owns and operates four regulated hydroelectric generating plants and approximately 7,000 kilometres of transmission and distribution power lines. FortisBC employs over 500 people in British Columbia and is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Fortis Inc., the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. Fortis Inc. shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional information can be accessed at or



Media Contact:


Jake Jacobs

Ministry of Energy

250 952-0628

250 213-6934 (cell)

Nicole Bogdanovic

Communications Specialist, FortisBC

Phone: 250 469-6078
Cell: 250 470-2208



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