While it’s always been clear that the Ontario government hasn’t pleased everyone, it has been active on the green file and appears to be earmarking a substantial sum for some environmentally-friendly improvements at schools across the province.
The provincial government recently announced that a sizeable $1.4 billion in funding will be given to schools across Ontario to cover repairs and renewals and that the new fund will invest $200 million of cap and trade proceeds to making said schools a little greener.
According to the province, the $200 million comes from the new Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF). As part of its Climate Change Action Plan, the province is allocating the money to schools to install energy-efficient building elements such as high-efficiency lighting, building automation systems, energy-efficient windows, and solar energy and geothermal systems. The GGRF will be funded through proceeds from Ontario’s cap and trade auctions.
The province says this will help improve student health and fight climate change.
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As for how much funding Halton schools in particular will receive, the province says the Halton Catholic District School Board is eligible to receive $958,460. The Halton District School Board could receive up to $3,043,870.
“Energy-efficient repair and renewal projects are an important investment in the well-being of Ontario’s students,”says Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Education. “By reducing greenhouse gas emissions from schools and keeping schools in a state of good repair, we can provide them with healthier learning environments for years to come.”
The new funding announcement isn’t too surprising, as the province has been investing heavily in school repairs and renewals. Since 2013, Ontario has invested almost $10 billion to renew schools.
This funding is part of Ontario’s $1.4 billion investment this year to improve school buildings by repairing and upgrading elements such as roofs, flooring and plumbing systems.
Ontario is investing proceeds from cap and trade auctions into Climate Change Action Plan actions to cut greenhouse gas pollution to 15 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020, 37 per cent by 2030 and 80 per cent by 2050.
The investment includes support for energy-efficiency retrofits for schools, businesses, universities, colleges, houses and social housing apartments.