Ontario Helps Schools Invest in Green Technology
McGuinty Government Continues To Invest In Green Economy
Ontario is investing $50 million for public school boards to reduce energy costs in schools by installing renewable energy technologies for heating, cooling or generating electricity.
This investment will bring a range of renewable technologies to schools, including:
- small-scale wind projects to generate electricity for use in schools,
- solar photovoltaic to generate electricity
- solar thermal for heating (air or water), and
- geothermal systems for heating and cooling.
The use of these technologies will allow school boards to off-set future operating costs, such as electricity and natural gas. As well, boards could sell electricity to the grid through Feed-In Tariffs, which form part of the recently passed Green Energy Act. It will also create interactive teaching opportunities for students by making schools living laboratories.
Ontario's elementary and secondary schools have significant energy costs -- nearly half a billion dollars each year. The aim is to help school boards reduce those costs as well as reduce greenhouse gas emissions, save on energy demand and support more green jobs. Ontario's green economy stands to benefit as this investment provides opportunities for suppliers of renewable energy technologies in the province.
It is expected the government will create a centralized procurement process to assist Ontario's 72 school boards in researching technologies and selecting vendors as well as maximizing the benefit of large volume purchasing power. The funding will flow to boards in the spring of 2010.
- In April 2009, Ontario announced a $550 million investment to help over 1000 schools become more energy efficient, creating and sustaining over 5,500 jobs.
- This year, Ontario school boards will spend about $460 million on utility bills.
- Since 2003, the McGuinty government has invested $4.8 billion through the Good Places to Learn program. So far, over 12,000 school renewal projects, which include replacing roofs, windows and boilers, are underway or completed.
“This is a key investment in Ontario's green economy and in our schools. It will encourage our renewable energy sector, while also helping schools reduce their energy costs and free up more dollars for better educational uses.”
“Students are keen to see first-hand how green energy can power our communities. This investment will provide the foundation for our students and future decision-makers to make the most of renewable power sources to build a healthier, more environmentally sustainable and prosperous Ontario.”