B.C.’s ESG Advantage

people sitting among the trees outside Junction Orchard & Cidery, Saanich.

Why choose B.C.

British Columbia provides a welcoming environment that actively encourages investment. It has a world-renowned legal system, top-ranked quality of life, and a diverse and skilled workforce. The Province is committed to ESG and leading on environmental and social responsibility—helping to grow an economy that is inclusive, sustainable and innovative.

ESG in B.C.

The province of British Columbia is known for its incredible natural beauty, dedication to sustainability, business innovation and strategic economic growth. Increasing and maintaining this commitment is not only at the heart of the success of our province, but it also supports our core values as British Columbians.

Diverse groups, individuals, businesses, communities and Indigenous Peoples are aligning and partnering to lead, inspire and expand an economy that is environmentally, socially and economically aware and connected.

Martin Knowles | Photo courtesy of naturallywood.com

B.C. businesses are leading the way in offering environmentally and socially responsible goods and services.

This trends snapshot provides metrics that showcase
how B.C. is positioned in the ESG landscape.

Infographic displaying key ESG related metrics for the jurisdiction of British Columbia. Accessible content is detailed below the image.

  • Clean energy generated: Megawatt hours generated for low carbon energy types. Trending upwards compared to 2008. 58.77 million megawatt hours of generated for low carbon energy types in 2008 vs 64.02 million megawatt hours generated in 2022. 
  • GHG Emissions: Kilotonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Trending downwards compared to 2009. 75,555 kilotonnes in 2009 vs. 74,841 kilotonnes in 2020. 
  • Municipal Solid Waste Disposal: Kilograms of municipal solid waste per person. Trending downwards compared to 2012. Disposed of an average of 506 kg of municipal solid waste per person in 2021 — down 63 kg per person since 2012.  
  • Environmental and Clean Technology Sector: Jobs in environmental and clean technology production. Trending upwards compared to 2017. 40,086 in 2021 were employed in Environmental and Clean Technology production in BC vs. 35,899 in 2017. 

  • Housing completion rate: Number of housing units completed in British Columbia. Trending upwards compared to 2000. 16,784 total units completed in 2000 vs 38,361 completed in 2022. 
  • Post-secondary education: Percentage of people 25 years and over with post-secondary credentials. Trending upwards compared to 2000. 47% of those aged 25 years and over had post-secondary credentials in 2000, vs. 65.3% in 2022. 
  • Poverty incidence: Percentage of persons in low income. Trending downwards compared to 2015. Percentage of persons in low income was 18.6% in 2015 vs 8.8% in 2021. 
  • Median after-tax income: Median after tax income for families and persons. Trending upwards compared to 2000. Median after-tax income for economic families and persons not in an economic family was $50,200 in 2000 vs. $68,500 in 2021.

  • Private sector investment in innovation: Private sector investment in research and development. Trending upwards compared to 2000. private sector investment in research and development totaled $835 million in 2000 vs.  $2.33 billion in 2020. 
  • Representation of women on boards of directors: Percentage of women on boards of directors. Trending upwards, between 2016 and 2020 the percentage of women on board of directors increased from 14% to 20%. 
  • Diversity of Ownership: Percentage of private sector businesses. As of Q3 2023. Immigrant 29.5%; Visible Minority 24.0%; Woman 20.0%; LGBTQ 4.1%; First Nations, Metis or Inuit 2.8%; and Disability 2.1%  
  • Workplace health and safety: The time-loss claims rate for serious injuries for rateable sectors. Trending downwards, between 2001 and 2021 the time-loss claims rate for serious injuries for rateable sectors decreased from 0.4 to 0.3. 

Data Sources: Statistics Canada; Environmental Reporting BC; & WorkSafeBC – January 2024