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Q&A RICHARD DAMECOUR

Richard Damecour President & CEO FVB Energy Inc.

Can you tell us a little about the history of FVB Energy? FVB Energy Inc. was founded in Sweden and for more than 40 years has helped clients develop, operate, and grow energy systems in both the private and non-profit sectors. With offices in Canada, the U.S., and Sweden, FVB offers the perspective of an experienced global partner, plus the insight to customize energy solutions for local conditions and needs. We have worked in every Canadian province and territory, most U.S. states, and more than 30 countries globally. In North America, FVB has helped develop nearly 80 percent of the new district energy systems built since 1990. Our extensive international experience helps us quickly identify business, technical, and environmental issues that need to be considered from the outset. With a focus on the business implications of engineering decisions, FVB designs for the bottom line.

embargoes of the early 1970’s showed Europe how important it was to develop thermal grids in order to become less reliant on imported oil and become more sustainable. Recently Russia has threatened to cut off the supply of natural gas to the Ukraine. How will people in the Ukraine heat their homes and provide domestic hot water if this happens? Well, fortunately the Ukraine has a large number of District Energy Systems serving their urban communities. While these systems currently use a large amount of Natural Gas it is much easier to add a local energy source to a single thermal grid than it is to retrofit a 100,000 homes and businesses. The one thing we are certain of is that the energy landscape is unpredictable. Who remembers all the discussion about “Peak Oil” 10 years ago? Who would have predicted the historic low cost of oil we see today? The strength of District Energy Systems is that they are very flexible in utilizing whatever energy source makes the most sense.

How do District Energy Systems promote sustainability? I like to refer to District Energy Systems as Thermal Grids. These Thermal Grids allow communities to take advantage of local and renewable thermal technologies (i.e. Biomass, Solar, and Waste Heat). For a community, the ability to utilize local energy sources and be less reliant on imported energy sources is key to being sustainable. The oil

How do you help communities develop District Energy Systems? FVB is not just an Engineering design firm, we actually spend a significant amount of our efforts helping communities develop the business side of District Energy Systems. This starts from looking at what potential a particular community has to develop a District Energy System; can a business case be developed to support it? We look at

30 | SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS MAGAZINE

Sustainable Business Magazine  
Sustainable Business Magazine  

Issue 02/15

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