Overview

Ontario is committing $325 million to the Green Investment Fund for projects that will fight climate change, grow the economy and create jobs. These investments are part of our plan to secure a healthy, clean and prosperous low-carbon future.

Green Investment Fund projects will:

Helping homeowners save money and lower their carbon footprint

Visit the Ontario Home Energy Conservation Incentive Program to learn which utility is offering the program in your area.

As part of our Climate Change Plan, we've invested $100 million from the Ontario Green Investment Fund to help homeowners reduce energy bills while cutting greenhouse gas emissions.

The investment will enhance the existing home energy audits and retrofit programs offered by Enbridge Gas Distribution and Union Gas. This investment will help about 37,000 homeowners across the province conduct audits to identify energy-saving opportunities and then complete retrofits, such as replacing furnaces and water heaters, and upgrading insulation. Homeowners who heat their homes with natural gas, oil, propane or wood will also be eligible for rebates towards energy audits and retrofits.

Home energy efficiency retrofits save consumers money on their energy bills. Historically, every dollar invested in natural gas efficiency has resulted in up to $4 in savings for natural gas consumers. Homeowners who heat their homes with electricity can participate in saveONenergy programs, offered through their Local Distribution Companies, to achieve electricity savings.

This program will provide more choices to families on ways to become energy efficient and lower energy bills while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Making it easier to choose electric vehicles

Ontario is building almost 500 electric vehicle charging stations at over 250 convenient locations across the province to help reduce greenhouse gas pollution and fight climate change.

The province is working with 24 public- and private-sector partners to create an unprecedented network of public charging electric vehicle stations in cities, along highways, at workplaces and at various public places across Ontario. This includes over 200 Level 3 and nearly 300 Level 2 charging stations. The entire network will be in service by March 31, 2017.

Level 2 charging stations use a 240 volt system and can fully charge a vehicle in about four to six hours.

Level 3 charging stations use a 480 volt system and can charge a vehicle to 80% in about 30 minutes.

Retrofitting social housing

We're investing $92 million from the Green Investment Fund into social housing retrofits.

Most of Ontario’s social housing high-rise apartment towers were built in the 1960s and 1970s and can use up to 25% more energy per square metre than a house. The province is investing in energy retrofits for high-rise social housing towers of 150 units or more. Through this funding, we'll retrofit an estimated 35 to 50 high-rise buildings by:

  • installing energy-efficient boilers
  • insulating outer walls
  • installing more energy efficient windows and lighting

We're also investing in electrical retrofits for single social housing homes, which are often found in smaller and rural communities.

Ontario’s Ministry of Municipal Housing received and reviewed expressions of interest from service managers and the Ontario Aboriginal Housing Services Corporation. Selected service managers and the Ontario Aboriginal Housing Corporation will receive funds and choose the most appropriate projects in their communities through a competitive process.

Helping businesses reduce emissions

The government is investing $74 million in a cleantech innovation initiative, which will help industry reduce greenhouse gas pollution by encouraging large industrial plants to adopt leading-edge technologies, while supporting entrepreneurs in developing creative solutions. For this initiative, the government is partnering with the Ontario Centres of Excellence, which drive the development of Ontario’s economy by helping create new jobs, products, services, technologies and businesses.

The government is also investing $25 million in Smart Green, an energy efficiency program to help small and medium-sized businesses invest in equipment and process upgrades that will reduce emissions and become more energy efficient. The program will be delivered by Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters. Qualifying businesses will receive grants of up to $200,000 to cover up to 50 per cent of eligible project costs. The program will help small- and medium-sized businesses reduce their energy consumption, and help Ontario meet its targets for GHG emissions reduction.

Helping fund local environmental organizations

Ontario is investing $1 million from the Green Investment Fund in Kitchener’s Sustainability CoLab Network.

Sustainability CoLab is an organization that helps small and medium sized businesses set and achieve targets to reduce their environmental impact while enhancing their competitive advantage and stimulating the low-carbon economy. To date, CoLab Network program members have collectively reduced 29,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases – the equivalent of taking 6,100 cars off the road.

With this investment, CoLab will fund local environmental organizations in their network to help businesses introduce energy-efficiency measures and complete energy retrofits and building audits.

Supporting Indigenous communities

The province is providing $5 million from the Green Investment Fund to the Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources, in partnership with the Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation. This investment will help provide Indigenous communities with training, tools and infrastructure to address climate change by:

  • developing climate change adaptation plans
  • building technical capacity so Indigenous communities are able to take advantage of economic opportunities from Ontario’s cap and trade program
  • creating a Northern Ontario climate change impact study using data from the adaptation plans

Ontario is also committing $8 million to develop advanced microgrid solutions in First Nations communities. These microgrid projects will support economic growth by reducing reliance on diesel fuel and enabling stable, predictable sources of power. These projects will show how renewable generation and energy storage can:

  • replace diesel fuel as a source of power
  • reduce GHG emissions
  • improve reliability for customers
  • leverage an emerging international market for advanced microgrids and create new economic opportunities
Updated: August 31, 2021
Published: February 04, 2016