By Neil Munro
BC Insulators Union Local 118 Vice-President
The BC Insulators have had a busy spring season so far participating in several trade shows and conferences.
For the 5th year in a row we attended Buildex Vancouver, Western Canada’s largest conference and tradeshow for construction, renovation and related work. The conference took place at the Vancouver Convention Centre – West on February 25 & 26, 2015. We welcomed old friends and made some new contacts, generated new work for our membership and advanced mechanical insulation with engineers, energy managers and the general public.
Mark Guay did an excellent job staffing the booth and promoting our green agenda to contractors, both organized and unorganized, suppliers, and answered many questions relating to our work.
The Green Team (Ashley Duncan, Mark Guay and Neil Munro) attended Union Activism for the Green Economy at Harrison Hot Springs CLC Winter School.
The BC Insulators had a hand in developing the course, and it was a positive experience. The course talked about how unions can help transform the Green Economy in the areas of transportation, energy, building retrofits, and forestry.
There was some different perspectives from all of the unions involved including the ILWU, the BC Teachers Federation and the BCGEU. Every one attending benefitted from the exchange of diversified views and opinions that such a unique group could provide.
The second year apprentice class completed the re-insulation at the Vancouver Food Bank – see details here – to help them save energy and money that can go to those in need! Thanks go out to the insulators who performed the work (Shane Anderson and Michael Pengelly) and to Frost Insulation for providing the material and a scissor lift to complete the project.
The Food Bank was very appreciative of the initiative and the CEO extended his personal thanks to all involved. In the near future we will be analysing the energy usage data at school and determining the savings that have been realized.
Recent work with engineering groups are achieving buy-in from that sector.
Our last presentation to Integral Group and Rocky Point Engineering in conjunction with the BCICA went very well. Integral has included the BCICA Quality Assurance in their Master Specification and we are working closely with them to implement this. This presentation follows others at WSP Engineering and Rocky Point Engineering where we have received similar buy in. Chris Ishkanian and Neil Munro met with Rocky Point to finalize implementation of the QAC program in their Master Specification.
There are currently 7 projects that are in the tendering process with the QAC program through the Integral Group. 2 have been awarded and inspectors appointed. We are following up with Integral to determine the status of the others.
The BC Insulators also attended the Living Futures “unConference” in Seattle. Our trade show booth was a great success and we made some very important connections with the City of Vancouver and the BC Building Corporation.
Local 7 from Seattle/Tacoma, was in attendance as was the LMCT a combined effort of US Contractors and our International representatives. It was a pleasure to work with Todd Mitchell and Greg Bowers of Local 7 and Alec Rexroat of the LMCT.
Work in the Seattle area is booming and Local 7 is on the same page as Local 118 in pressuring local governments to increase and enforce regulations around the specification and installation of mechanical insulation.