Sustainability CoLab is an organization that helps businesses of all sizes and sectors set and achieve targets to reduce their environmental impact while enhancing their competitive advantage and stimulating the low-carbon economy. To date, CoLab Network program members have collectively reduced 29,000 tonnes of greenhouse gases – the equivalent of taking more than 6,100 cars off the road.
With this investment, CoLab will fund local environmental organizations in their network to help businesses undertake initiatives such as introducing energy-efficiency measures and completing energy retrofits and building audits. Sustainability CoLab expects to help program participants reduce about 50,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions by the end of 2017.
Ontario’s new Green Investment Fund is a $325-million down payment on the province’s cap and trade program to strengthen the economy, create jobs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. . These investments will help secure a healthy, clean and prosperous low-carbon future and transform the way we live, move, work and adapt to our environment while ensuring strong, sustainable communities.
Fighting climate change is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in people’s talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history, creating a dynamic, innovative environment where business thrives and building a secure retirement savings plan.
“Successfully fighting climate change while fostering a dynamic and prosperous economy requires a collective effort from government, people, industries and businesses of all sizes. This investment enables local environmental organizations to work with small and medium-sized businesses in the community on innovative, sustainable and practical ways to reduce greenhouse gas pollution.”
— Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change
“We have an important opportunity to mitigate the effects of climate, while helping energy efficient businesses grow. In Waterloo Region, we’re proud to partner with Sustainability CoLab as we work toward our goal of a low-carbon economy.”
— Daiene Vernile, Member of Provincial Parliament, Kitchener-Centre
“This game-changing investment from the government of Ontario will support non-profits in the CoLab Network that are creating hubs for the low-carbon economy across the province. It will accelerate their efforts to help businesses track their emissions, set and achieve targets to reduce them, and be celebrated for progress made.”
— Mike Morrice, Executive Director, Sustainability CoLab
“Sustainable Waterloo Region is thrilled that Ontario is funding programs like our own Regional Carbon Initiative which supports organizations to reduce their impact, while remaining economically sustainable. We are proud that this program, which was developed, incubated and proven to be successful here in Waterloo Region is now scaling beyond our community. The funding will allow us to enhance our support of members, encourage more target setting and, most importantly, spur GHG reductions across the Region.”
— Tova Davidson, Executive Director, Sustainable Waterloo Region
CoLab Network includes non-profit organizations launching or growing programs to engage businesses in growing the low-carbon economy in Durham Region, Hamilton-Burlington, Kingston, Niagara Region, Ottawa, Sudbury, Waterloo Region and York Region.
In just 10 years, Ontario has become a North American leader in the development, use and manufacturing of clean energy.
In May 2015, Ontario became the first province in Canada to set a mid-term greenhouse gas pollution reduction target of 37 per cent below 1990 levels by 2030.
Green Investment Fund projects also include: more electric vehicle fast-charging stations, energy retrofits for single family homes and affordable housing, and support for industry and small and medium sized businesses.