Inside the Southeast False Creek Neighbourhood Energy Utility

How the utility works

Utility customers

How utility rates are set and who to contact with questions about your service.

When you wash dishes or take a shower, the energy that goes into heating water is typically wasted down the drain.

The Southeast False Creek Neighbourhood Energy Utility recycles this waste heat back into the community, eliminating more than 60% of the global warming pollution associated with heat and hot water use in buildings.

We host opportunities for the general public to tour the facility. Look for the next Doors Open event for more information.

 

How sewer heat recovery works

By City of Vancouver

The Southeast False Creek Neighbourhood Energy Utility recycles waste heat captured from sewage and waste water to provide heating and hot water to buildings in Southeast False Creek.

  • Step 1: sewage heat is captured

    By City of Vancouver

    The thermal energy, or heat, is captured at the False Creek Energy Centre using a heat exchange process integrated with a City of Vancouver sewage pump station. This supplies 70% of the utility's energy production.

  • Step 1 v. 2: sewage heat is captured

    By City of Vancouver

    The thermal energy, or heat, is captured at the False Creek Energy Centre using a heat exchange process integrated with a City of Vancouver sewage pump station. This supplies 70% of the utility's energy production.

  • Step 2: supplemental heat for coldest days

    By City of Vancouver

    The remaining 30% of the heat is supplied by high-efficiency natural gas boilers that provide supplemental heat on the coldest days of the year.

  • Step 3: pipe takes thermal energy to buildings

    By City of Vancouver

    A distribution pipe system sends thermal energy, in the form of heated water, from the False Creek Energy Centre to the buildings that it services.

  • Step 4: heat and hot water distributed

    By City of Vancouver

    Each building has an energy transfer station that transfers the thermal energy, or heat, to the building's mechanical system. The building's mechanical system then distributes heat and hot water to building occupants.

  • Step 5: waste water returns to the system

    By City of Vancouver

    In your home, you wash your dishes, pour boiling water down the drain, take a shower, and flush the toilet. The heat from the waste water you flush down the drain returns to the system to be captured and used again.

 

Heat pump details (PDF, 86 KB)