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Ottawa-Carleton District School Board

Who are you and what do you do?

Ottawa-Carleton District School Board is the seventh largest school board in Ontario. This includes 119 elementary schools, 26 secondary schools, and 5 alternative sites. We serve over 70,000 students at over 125 sites. The OCDSB vision statement is: “a dynamic, creative learning organization that fosters the achievement, well-being, and dignity or every student. The 2015-2019 strategic plan includes a focus on “stewardship”, challenging OCDSB to “model sustainability, smart energy use and sound environmental practices for students”.

Why did you join Carbon 613?

The OCDSB is a large employer in the Ottawa community and must contribute to the transition to a lower carbon consuming city. We also joined the program to learn from others, as well as to showcase some of our own sustainability practices.

What GHG targets or other major sustainability goals are you working on?

  • Building environmental awareness among students and staff: Students have been learning about school energy use and waste management, as well as networking with local environmental organizations. When successful we will have tens of thousands of environmental advocates.
  • Generating Solar Power: The OCDSB has installed more than 41 roof-mounted solar PV arrays
  • Pursuing certification through the EcoSchools Program: Over one third of OCDSB schools are now certified
  • Continue Green Bins in Schools Program: Currently operating in more than 60 schools
  • OCDSB follows the District’s Energy Conservation Standards which includes, lights, equipment, heating, and air conditioning
  • Making the fleet more sustainable: OCDSB has replaced over 20 vehicles with 2015 hybrids.

What kind of results have you seen?

  • OCDSB generated almost $1 million in revenue over five years through producing solar energy
  • In 2014/2015 these schools diverted over 750,836 kgs of refuse from landfill.
  • 57 schools are certified through the EcoSchools program, including 20 Bronze, 27 Silver and 10 Gold certifications; Cairine Wilson Secondary was awarded Platinum Status.

What have been the top three benefits to your organization?

Better learning and cooperation with other sectors within the city
Communicating environmental success
Continuing progress in reducing energy consumption

What support have you received from Carbon 613?

  • Tracking greenhouse emissions for each school
  • Can visualize OCDSB’s carbon footprint and see, at a glance, how it changes over time
  • Gaining recognition and support for OCDSB’s environmental leadership in Ottawa
The value of Carbon 613 is facilitating the continued discussion in order to focus on the actions required if we are to meet this community’s targets for sustainability.

Ottawa-Carleton District School Board

is one of over 200 businesses in the CoLab Network working to set and achieve sustainability goals. Together, we're demonstrating a more sustainable economy is possible.

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