City-owned buildings get an injection of solar power

TORONTO, Sept. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Today, the City of Toronto and Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited (Toronto Hydro) launched the first phase of a program that will see City-owned buildings across Toronto outfitted with more than 8,800 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. The program kicks-off on September 10 with construction starting on three installations - Mimico Arena, York Mills Arena and Goulding Park Community Centre/Arena.

"This is a great opportunity to make use of underutilized City roof space and generate revenue for the City," said Councillor Norm Kelly (Ward 40 Scarborough-Agincourt), Chair of the Parks and Environment Committee. "Reducing environmental impacts for communities and improving air quality for our residents is another step in the right direction."

The energy from the panels will be fed into Toronto Hydro's electrical grid, generating over $16 million in gross revenues for the City over 20 years, and will also help to increase the security of Toronto's electricity supply. The electricity will be purchased under the terms of Feed-in-Tariff contracts with the Ontario Power Authority, a program to encourage project developers to invest in generation, transmission and distribution, so that even more renewable energy sources can be incorporated into Ontario's electricity system.

The PV installations will generate approximately 2,600 megawatt hours (MWh) of electricity annually, which is roughly equivalent to the consumption of 215 households, and will result in the reduction of approximately 480 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions a year. At least 60 per cent of the PV equipment will be made in Ontario, which will help support the growth of the solar energy industry in the province.

"We have an important role interconnecting renewable projects to the distribution grid; we have connected hundreds of distributed generation customers totalling more than 90 megawatts (MW), of which 13 MW are renewable projects," said Ivano Labricciosa, Vice-President, Asset Management, Toronto Hydro. "And, in addition to supporting our customers' renewable programs we have two solar projects of our own that generate over 900 MWh and displace approximately 165 tonnes of carbon dioxide. This is part of the company's corporate social responsibility strategy."

Participating buildings and locations:
Mimico Arena - 31 Drummond Street
York Mills Arena - 2539 Bayview Avenue
Goulding Park Community Centre/Arena - 45 Goulding Avenue
Police College - 70 Birmingham Street
Agincourt Park Arena - 31 Glen Watford Drive
Victoria Village Arena - 190 Bermondsey Road
Malvern Community Centre - 30 Sewells Road
Grandravine Community Centre/Arena - 23 Grandravine Drive
Roding Community Centre/Arena - 600 Roding Street
McGregor Park Arena - 2231 Lawrence Avenue East

The Solar PV Program is jointly owned and managed by the City of Toronto and Toronto Hydro. To find out more, visit http://toronto.ca/changeisintheair/index.htm or http://torontohydro.com/solarpower.

Toronto is Canada's largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people. Toronto's government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Toronto Hydro Corporation is a holding company, which wholly-owns two subsidiaries:

  • Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited - which distributes electricity and engages in Conservation and Demand Management (CDM) activities; and
  • Toronto Hydro Energy Services Inc. - which provides street lighting services.

The principal business of the Corporation and its subsidiaries is the distribution of electricity by Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited. Toronto Hydro-Electric System owns and operates an electricity distribution system, which delivers electricity to approximately 715,000 customers located in the City of Toronto. It is the largest municipal electricity distribution company in Canada and distributes approximately 18% of the electricity consumed in the Province of Ontario.

SOURCE: Toronto Hydro Corporation

For further information:

Media contacts: 
Rob Maxwell, Manager, Toronto Renewable Energy Office, Facilities Management - 416-395-6927, rmaxwel@toronto.ca
Jennifer Link, Toronto Hydro, (416) 542-2725, jlink@torontohydro.com


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