Energy-efficiency program launched for Ontario's industrial sector

June 30, 2010   by PLANT staff

TORONTO: The Ontario Power Authority (OPA) has officially launched a new energy-efficiency program to reduce electricity use and increase competitiveness for large industrial companies that are directly connected to the electricity transmission system.

The Industrial Accelerator is a five-year program that provides financial incentives to speed up investment in electricity-saving projects. Participating companies will contractually commit to achieve specific conservation targets within a set period of time and to maintain them over the term of the contract.

For participating companies, the program is designed to cover up to 70% of eligible capital costs, an electricity cost savings of up to 30%, support for high-performance industrial installations that improve productivity and competitiveness, and reduce the demand on the electrical grid.

The program will also drive the development of green technology, creating more than 5,000 jobs over the next seven years.

"Partnering with our largest energy consumers to reduce their energy use will enhance their long-term competitiveness and is part of Ontario’s transformation from being a leader in consumption to a leader in conservation," said Brad Duguid, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure.

Ontario’s industrial sector is made up of more than 20,000 small, medium and large companies that account for approximately one-third of all electricity use in Ontario.

Within the sector, 45 large industrial companies directly connected to the transmission system represent an attractive opportunity for energy savings and are eligible to participate in the Industrial Accelerator program. These include companies in the pulp and paper, iron and steel, mining, auto assembly and parts, chemicals, petroleum refining, smelting and refining, and cement industries.

"With the launch of this program, eligible, large industrial electricity consumers in Ontario have access to financial resources to help them make significant energy-efficiency improvements," said Colin Andersen, OPA CEO.

Several industry participants were involved in an OPA-industry working group that assisted in the development of the program.

Click here for more information on the Industrial Accelerator initiative.