Ontario Communities Gearing Up for Conservation Challenge

Best Conservers Vie For Bragging Rights and Awards

TORONTO, April 21 /CNW/ - Sioux Lookout and Kingston will have their work cut out to win this year's Power Pledge Community Challenge if dozens of other Ontario communities have their way. The two communities won last year's friendly competition, defeating 81 other communities in the major province-wide conservation awareness campaign.

The Community Challenge, launched today, is part of the five month Power Pledge campaign that encourages all Ontarians to commit to a few simple, meaningful conservation actions to save money and help protect the environment. The Power Pledge can be found at www.powerpledge.ca. The Community Challenge culminates on Challenge Day, Wednesday August 11, 2010.

Fifty-four Ontario communities have already registered for the annual community challenge that demonstrates which ones get bragging rights as Ontario's most conservation-conscious municipalities. It is expected that more than 100 communities will enter the competition this year.

    Communities confirmed to date:

    Arnprior           Halton Region        Parry Sound
    Aurora             Hamilton             Peel Region
    Aylmer             Ingersoll            Pelham
    Belleville         Kenora               Peterborough
    Blind River        King                 Port Colborne
    Brighton           Kingston             Sarnia
    Brockton           Kitchener            Sioux Lookout
    Burlington         London               St. Catharines
    Callander          Markham              Sudbury
    Cambridge          Meaford              Tecumseh
    Chatham-Kent       Newmarket            Thorold
    Clarington         Minto                Tillsonburg
    Dryden             Niagara Falls        Timmins
    Elora              Niagara Region       Toronto
    Fergus             Oakville             Waterloo
    Goderich           Orillia              Waterloo Region
    Guelph             Ottawa               Woodstock
    Halton Hills       Owen Sound           Woolwich

    Participating municipalities can compete in two different categories:
    -   The highest percentage drop in electricity consumption between 8:00am
        and 8:00pm on Wednesday August 11;
    -   The highest per capita participation in The Power Pledge campaign.

In 2009, the Community Challenge included communities representing some 56 percent of Ontarians. Sioux Lookout achieved the highest percentage of its residents taking the Pledge. Kingston won the Woodstock Cup by reducing its consumption on the Challenge Day by 7.8 percent.

The Community Challenge is a collaboration of the Ontario Power Authority OPA, the Electricity Distributors Association (EDA), the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) and the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) - and their associated members. The campaign also acknowledges the long-standing leadership of the City of Woodstock by annually awarding the Woodstock Cup to the winner of the megawatt-reduction category.



"Understanding the power of collective action and the accumulative effect that individual conservation actions can have, will help us ensure a cleaner, environmentally sound and sustainable energy future for all Ontarians," said Brian Bentz, Chair of the Electricity Distributors Association (EDA). "What better way to promote conservation awareness than through a friendly challenge that brings out the best in local pride through some good natured competition between communities? Promoting energy conservation awareness is the first step in inspiring action and Ontario's electricity distributors will be taking action with their local municipalities on Community Challenge Day."


"AMO is proud to partner with the Power Pledge campaign" said Peter Hume, AMO President. "Energy efficiency and conservation lower municipal costs and fight climate change. The more people know about wasteful things like 'phantom power,' the easier it will be for them to save money at home as well. We strongly encourage municipalities to join the Power Pledge Campaign as a means to inspire community wide energy conservation."


"The Ontario Chamber network of 160 local chambers and boards of trade across the province is a natural ally for the Community Challenge", said Len Crispino, President & CEO, Ontario Chamber of Commerce. "We're pleased to help raise awareness about the importance and impact of conservation efforts."


"The Community Challenge is a fun, engaging way to urge Ontarians to take The Power Pledge", said Colin Andersen, CEO of the Power Authority. "Everyone saves electricity and money - not to mention helping the environment. And it is local leadership that can really make it happen."


"An increasing number of consumers want to manage their electricity use and reduce their impact on the environment," said Paul Murphy, President and CEO of Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator. "These conservation and demand management efforts are gaining momentum and support our efforts to reliably operate Ontario's power system."

City of Woodstock

"In most competitions, there are winners and losers," said Michael Harding, Mayor of the City of Woodstock. "In this one, everybody wins - we all save money and fight climate change. But of course, we still want Woodstock to win!"

    About the sponsors

    -   The Electricity Distributors Association (EDA) and its 80 local
        electricity distributors - the publicly and privately owned companies
        that safely and reliably deliver electricity to over 4.5 million
        Ontario homes, businesses and institutions.
    -   The Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), representing
        almost all of Ontario's 444 municipal governments.
    -   The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) and Chamber Executives of
        Ontario, representing local chambers and boards of trade across the
    -   The Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) - The IESO
        balances the supply of and demand for electricity in Ontario and then
        directs its flow across the province's transmission lines. The IESO
        is the official arbiter of the Community Challenge results.
    -   The Ontario Power Authority (OPA) is responsible for leading and
        co-ordinating conservation initiatives across the province.
    -   The City of Woodstock and Mayor Michael Harding continue to play a
        leadership role in The Community Challenge campaign by encouraging
        participation by municipalities throughout the province.

SOURCE Ontario Power Authority

For further information: For further information: Ontario Power Authority - Media Contact Line, (416) 969-6307; Electricity Distributors' Association - Christine Hallas, (905) 265-5322; Association of Municipalities of Ontario - Brian Lambie, (905) 271-1668; Ontario Chamber of Commerce - Erin Riach, (416) 482-5222 x 248; Independent Electricity System Operation - Alexandra Campbell, (416) 506-2806

Organization Profile

Ontario Power Authority

More on this organization

Green News

More on this organization

Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890