Ontario Municipalities Challenged to Energy Conservation Duel

    Provincewide call to action challenges Ontarians to conserve on August 14

    TORONTO, June 3 /CNW/ - Woodstock Mayor Michael Harding has dropped the
gauntlet, this morning issuing a challenge to municipal leaders across Ontario
to compete in the Count Me In! Community Challenge Day on August 14, 2009.
    Mayor Harding's challenge has already been accepted enthusiastically by
the representatives of 19 other municipalities who have each committed to
reduce their overall energy consumption between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. on the
Community Challenge Day.
    The Count Me In! Community Challenge Day takes its name from the ongoing
theme for Energy Conservation Week 2009 (May 17-23). Ontarians are being asked
to pledge a commitment and to create a personalized conservation plan at
www.countmeinontario.ca, from now until Challenge Day.

    Participating municipalities can compete in two different categories:

    -  The highest percentage drop in electricity consumption on August 14,

    -  The highest per capita participation in the Count Me In! pledge drive.

    Results of the provincewide challenge will be announced at the AMO Annual
Conference on August 19th in Ottawa.
    The City of Woodstock has played a leadership role among Ontario
municipalities over the past few years encouraging energy conservation with
its August 14 Blackout Day initiative. This year, Woodstock has been joined by
the Ontario Power Authority, the Independent Electricity System Operator, the
Association of Municipalities of Ontario, and the Electricity Distributors
Association to create the Count Me In! Community Challenge Day.

    Municipalities which have made an early confirmation of their
participation in the challenge are:

    Aurora                             Orangeville
    Callander                          Paris
    Elliot Lake                        Penetanguishene
    Guelph                             Peterborough
    Hamilton                           Sarnia
    Ingersoll                          Tecumseh
    Kenora                             Tillsonburg
    Kitchener                          Township of East Ferris
    London                             Waterloo

    Quotes Regarding "Count Me In! Challenge Day" from Participating


    "This year's challenge is bigger and better than it's ever been and
that's because there is growing interest among all Ontarians and their
municipal leaders in conserving energy," said Woodstock Mayor Michael Harding.
"I'm extremely excited to see the commitment put forth by these municipal
representatives this morning, and I'm officially challenging all other
municipal leaders in the province to show us what they've got."


    "Count Me In! Challenge Day represents the final phase of this year's
spring-summer campaign to encourage energy conservation by Ontarians," says
Paul Shervill, Ontario Power Authority Vice President, Conservation. "It's an
opportunity for everyone in the province to contribute toward the long-term
goal of creating a 'culture of conservation' and achieving the most ambitious
energy saving targets in North America."


    "I encourage all municipalities across Ontario to join the Community
Challenge and inspire their communities to get involved", said Peter Hume,
President of the Association of Municipalities of Ontario. "As municipal
leaders, it's our job to lead by example and demonstrate how simple, practical
steps can reduce costs, increase energy efficiency, and help fight climate


    "This challenge helps remind us both of the many opportunities available
to conserve electricity and how important electricity is in our daily lives,"
said Paul Murphy, President and CEO of the Independent Electricity System
Operator (IESO). "Through conservation and shifting use of electricity to off
peak hours, Ontarians can play a major part in helping to manage the
reliability of the provincial power system."


    "You can 'Count Ontario's Electricity Distributors In' to take action
alongside their local municipalities on Community Challenge Day on August
14th," said John Loucks, Electricity Distributors Association (EDA) Chair.
"Promoting energy conservation awareness is the first step in inspiring
action. This one-day challenge is symbolic of a larger purpose to promote a
culture of conservation every day throughout the year."

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at http://photos.newswire.ca.
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at http://photos.newswire.ca. Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Ontario Power Authority, (416) 969-6307

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