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  • News
  • March 09, 2018

Ontario Helping Georgian College Fight Climate Change and Improve Energy Efficiency

Ontario’s Carbon Market Funding Improvements to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Pollution


9 March 2018


Ontario is reducing greenhouse gas pollution and supporting student achievement by investing in energy improvements at college and university campuses across the province. This investment is part of Ontario's Climate Change Action Plan and is funded by proceeds from the province's cap on pollution and carbon market.


Georgian College will receive an investment of approximately $4.6 million in grants to improve the energy efficiency of its campuses. The college is also eligible for another $5 million in interest-free loans to fund projects that reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

 The grant funding will be used to support HVAC retrofits in Barrie, Orillia and Owen Sound.

In addition, nearly $2.9 million will be used to reduce emissions and enhance the energy efficiency of the on-campus student residence in Barrie. This includes:


  • Installing new HVAC systems and high-efficiency boilers, LED lighting and Energy Star Appliances
  • Installing a building automation system to control and monitor new equipment to maximize efficiency
  • Installing display dashboards on each floor and at the main entrance of the building to show students how their energy use behaviours effect the environment


These initiatives will provide an opportunity for experiential learning in several Georgian academic programs as well as dynamic applied research activity in collaboration with industry partners.


Ontario's carbon market proceeds are required by law to be invested in programs that help households, businesses and public institutions reduce greenhouse gas pollution.


Supporting Ontario's colleges and universities to improve their energy efficiency and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions is part of Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.




“Ontario’s colleges and universities are some of the best places in the world to study. By investing in repairs and retrofits on campuses across the province that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve energy efficiency, we can extend the life of valuable infrastructure and provide students with the best possible learning environment to pursue their goals and achieve their potential.”

— Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development


“This investment is another example of how our Climate Change Action Plan and carbon market work together to help cut our greenhouse gas pollution while making life better for Ontario residents. This program gives our colleges and universities an opportunity to modernize their campuses, increase the comfort of their students and inspire future generations to help build our low-carbon economy.”

— Chris Ballard, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change


“The investment to post-secondary institutions here in Simcoe County demonstrates our government’s commitment to fighting climate change locally and across the province. I am pleased that Georgian College and Lakehead University will be able to create better learning spaces for students thanks to this investment while simultaneously reducing their carbon footprint and promoting sustainability on campus.”

— Ann Hoggarth, MPP for Barrie


“Georgian is a recognized leader in environmental sustainability. We embed sustainability practices in everything we do – from curriculum and classrooms, to products we purchase and how we manage waste. This funding from the province will be strategically invested to decrease our overall greenhouse gas emissions and improve facilities for students, including our on-campus residence in Barrie.”

— MaryLynn West-Moynes, President and CEO, Georgian College




  • In 2017-18, Ontario is investing over $214 million in grants and making available up to $300 million in interest-free loans to retrofit college and university facilities through the Greenhouse Gas Campus Retrofit Program. 
  • In November 2017, Ontario issued a call for proposals from publicly-assisted colleges and universities for innovative approaches to increase campus sustainability.
  • The Climate Change Action Plan and carbon market form the backbone of Ontario's strategy to cut greenhouse gas pollution by 80 per cent by 2050, while investing in programs that help Ontario families and businesses save money and lower greenhouse gas emissions.



Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan

Cap and Trade in Ontario

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