As the provincial and federal governments continue to battle over climate change, Ottawa has announced a new partnership to help cool buildings in Toronto’s downtown core.
Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna said Thursday that Enwave will be the first recipient of $10 million, which will go toward expanding the company’s deep lake-water cooling system that provides air conditioning to Toronto. The $10 million in funding is coming from the federal government’s new energy efficiency program.
McKenna said this partnership will help “do things in a better, cheaper, cleaner way.”
Enwave’s system takes cold water from the Great Lakes to cool downtown buildings, reducing energy costs by 80 per cent.
McKenna said this partnership will help create jobs and help tackle climate change in a “smarter way.”
The minister said she’s spoken to Canadians across the country and they can literally see that climate change is real and they are worried.
“We’ve seen extreme heat literally killing people. We’ve seen extreme floods. We’ve seen droughts across the country,” she said.
McKenna also stood behind the federal government’s carbon tax, which Premier Doug Ford has repeatedly slammed and has refused to comply with.
“I know there’s been a lot of discussion about putting a price on pollution and making sure we do it in a way that life is affordable, and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” the minister said.
“We know when it’s free to pollute, there will be more pollution, and putting a price on that, it creates the incentive for people to reduce emissions, to choose cleaner solutions.”
In November the province announced a $400M taxpayer-funded ‘carbon trust’ plan, which would see companies be rewarded for choosing greener solutions instead of being punished for not using environmentally-friendly practices.
McKenna noted that there have been examples of previous governments successfully using “pay for pollution” practices, such as the Mulroney government’s accord to end acid rain.