Canada's Government Launches EcoEnergy Efficiency Initiative

AEN News

Toronto - Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, Gary Lunn, announced plans on Sunday at the Metro Home Show in Toronto to invest approximately $300 million over four years to promote smarter energy use and reduce the amount of harmful emissions that affect the health of Canadians.

Lunn said the ecoENERGY Efficiency Initiative will encourage Canadian homeowners, businesses and industry, including the building/renovations sector to use energy more wisely.

"It's time to recognize that the largest untapped source of energy is the energy we waste," said Minister Lunn. "I am pleased to announce that this ecoENERGY package includes direct financial support to help Canadians, small business and industry make wise choices that save energy and money, while helping to clean up our environment."

The ecoENERGY Efficiency Initiative has the following three components:

- The $220-million ecoENERGY Retrofit program will offer homeowners, along with smaller businesses and organizations, the support and information they need to retrofit their homes, buildings and industrial processes. - The $60-million ecoENERGY for Buildings and Houses will encourage the construction and retrofit of more energy-efficient buildings and houses. - The $20-million ecoENERGY for Industry program aims to accelerate energy-saving investments and the exchange of best practices information within Canada's industrial sector.

"There are more than 13 million homes and 380,000 buildings in this country. They use 30 percent of our energy and are responsible for almost 30 percent of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions. Canada's industries account for 38 percent of energy demand and are responsible for 34 percent of our greenhouse gases," said Minister Lunn. "These are challenges that we must address."

These ecoENERGY components are specifically designed to provide incentives for retrofitting existing houses, small-building and industry stock, to raise the bar for new construction, and to continue collaboration with industry on efficiency improvements. They reinforce extensive Energy Efficiency Act amendments already included in the Government's Clean Air Regulatory Agenda that will tighten regulation of a wide range of consumer products and equipment. Program details, including information about how to apply for ecoENERGY grants, will be available when the program starts in April 2007.

Today's announcement is the third in a suite of ecoENERGY Initiatives to help Canadians use energy more efficiently, boost renewable energy supplies and develop cleaner-energy technologies. The other initiatives are the $230-million ecoENERGY Technology Initiative that funds the research, development and demonstration of clean energy technologies, and the ecoENERGY Renewable Initiative, a $1.5-billion investment to boost Canada's renewable-energy supplies.