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Hamilton demonstrates commitment to energy conservation

Thursday, November 15th 2007 10:08:43am

Media Release
Public Works

Corporate Energy Policy will reduce energy in city-owned facilities and operations by 20 per cent by 2020

HAMILTON, ON – November 15, 2007 –The City of Hamilton reinforced its commitment to creating a greener, healthier and more sustainable community last night by passing the Corporate Energy Policy proposed by the Public Works Office of Energy Initiatives. Ontario’s Chief Energy Conservation Officer, Peter Love, also made a special appearance at the Council meeting last night to recognize Hamilton for its success in winning the Voluntary Blackout Day Challenge on August 14th and to applaud the City for demonstrating leadership in energy conservation initiatives.

“By supporting the Corporate Energy Policy, Hamilton is solidifying it’s commitment to reducing energy use,” said Love.  “Just as charity begins at home, so does energy conservation, and the Council is ‘walking the walk’ on conserving valuable resources, as well as saving money and the environment.”  

The Corporate Energy Policy is specifically designed to facilitate the achievement of City-wide energy reduction targets, provide for ongoing energy monitoring and targeting of utility usage and defining policies regarding capital investment related to energy. Specifically, the Energy Policy calls for targeted energy reductions in energy intensity of City-owned facilities and operations of 20 per cent by 2020. These targets equate to about a 1.5 per cent reduction in energy per year. The report recommends that 2005 be used as the base year for measuring results.  In conjunction with related policies, such as Vision 2020, the City’s Energy Policy will also make a significant contribution to achieving the goal of 20 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2020.

“Implementing the Corporate Energy Policy is environmentally responsible, makes good business sense and is leading Hamilton on the path to being recognized as a Centre of Environmental and Innovative Excellence,” said Scott Stewart, General Manager of the Public Works Department.  “Whatever we save, we reduce in demand for fossil fuels and nuclear power and we assist with overall system reliability. Saving on energy costs is also a direct benefit to the taxpayers and ratepayers of Hamilton, both in terms of dollars and reduced Greenhouse Gas emissions.”

Hamilton’s Corporate Energy Policy and Energy Reserve are unique amongst other Ontario Municipalities. The Energy Policy provides a road map and strategies for changing the way Hamilton manages its facilities and operations, bringing energy conservation and demand management to the forefront of the decision-making process.

Supporting the new Energy Policy is not the only demonstration of the City’s leadership in energy conservation. As a participant in Voluntary Blackout Day Challenge on August 14th, Hamilton came out on top by successfully reducing energy consumption by 2.2 per cent (104,737 kWh) and peak demand by 3.2 per cent between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. The challenge was initiated in response to the City of Woodstock’s Voluntary Blackout Day Challenge - a friendly invitation urging Ontario municipalities to reduce consumption by four per cent on the anniversary of the 2003 blackout.  

"We're extremely proud of this achievement," said Mayor Fred Eisenberger. "Once again, Hamilton has proven its commitment to energy conservation and we continue with our efforts to maintain a city that is clean, green, and prosperous."  

“Woodstock’s voluntary blackout challenge was, I believe, treated fairly lightly when the Mayor first issued it,’” said Love.  “But now, it’s taking on a very serious life of its own, and, as cities like Hamilton this year and Windsor before it have proven, participation shows just how much electricity people can conserve when they put their minds to it. It proves that conservation works.”

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Media Contacts:

Geoff Lupton
Manager of Energy Initiatives
Public Works Department
905-546-2424, ext. 7372

Ontario Power Authority/Conservation Bureau Media Hotline