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Gas-powered Zamboni being retired for new electric one

New ice-clearing machine coming to the Powell River recreation centre
NEW EQUIPMENT: City of Powell River’s aging gas-powered Zamboni ice clearing machine is being replaced by an electric-powered vehicle.

City of Powell River continues to go green, with the aging gas-powered Zamboni used at the Powell River Recreation Complex being replaced with a new emission-free electric lithium battery-powered Zamboni capable of handling all the challenges of ice maintenance. 

According to a media release from the city, the purchase of the $185,000 Zamboni was made possible through a grant from the Powell River Community Forest reserve fund and brings the city one step closer to zero emissions. The release stated the lithium battery-powered machine has a longer service life than a natural gas Zamboni and will result in operational cost savings and efficiencies by reducing energy consumption. 

We’re excited to receive this new piece of equipment that will help maintain our ice for many years to come,” stated manager of recreation Neil Pukesh. “We’re also grateful to Powell River Community Forest for assisting us with this purchase as it demonstrates our commitment to improving energy efficiencies while we continue to implement innovative technology into our operations.” 

The recreation complex accounts for about 40 per cent of the city’s annual corporate carbon footprint and a variety of improvements have been made to reduce utility costs and emissions, the release stated. The E-Zamboni is another way the city has taken to address the deficiencies at the complex, with others being an electric ice edger, LED lighting throughout, low-emissivity energy-saving ceilings for both the rink and Hap Parker Arena, a system for ice-making, and a new efficient boiler, which was secured with a $150,000 incentive from FortisBC. 

The new Zamboni is another important response to climate change and in accordance with city council’s commitment to becoming carbon neutral, the release stated.

"Every vehicle and piece of equipment the city purchases has an impact on our carbon footprint for its entire lifecycle so by replacing fossil fuel-powered equipment and vehicles with those running on clean hydro-electricity, the city is showing leadership in reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, which is what we must do to combat irreversible climate damage," stated councillor CaroleAnn Leishman, chair of the climate change mitigation and adaptation committee.