The Ontario government is taking steps to reduce our carbon footprint and promote energy efficiency and conservation. They’re doing a decent job, but it isn’t enough. So Ontarians have banded together, and we’re moving on the ground to ensure our province has a sustainable future.
Last week in Toronto, eco-conscious Ontarians gathered for Toronto Renewable Energy Co-operative’s (TREC)
informative event, The Power of Community: Renewable Energy & Citizen Participation in Ontario
. Here are the highlights and a few simple actions you can take to help steer us towards a more sustainable future.
The event kicked off with a keynote from Dianne Saxe, Ontario’s Environmental Commissioner (ECO), who provided highlights from the ECO’s 2016 GHG Progress Report
. The report commends Ontario’s progress in phasing out coal (we now have practically zero smog days
, down from fifty three
days in 2005), but warns that we need to act now to meet our next set of emissions reduction targets. She also touched on her 2016 Energy Conservation Report
, which focuses on the importance of reducing our reliance on fossil fuels—they made up 80% of energy use in Ontario in 2014—mostly natural gas, gasoline and diesel.
Judith Lipp, TREC’s Research Director, spoke about the many economic, social and environmental benefits of community participation and ownership in Ontario’s renewable energy sector, as found in TREC’s recent Power of Community report
. Some key findings are summarized below:
The event closed with David Cork from TREC and Gideon Forman from the David Suzuki Foundation, who shared some simple steps that all Ontarians can take to help us move to a 100% Renewable Energy future: