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Cleantech and Green Energy Sector

Carpet Cycle Canada

Carpet Cycle Canada

Carpet Cycle had been servicing the Toronto Region from its New Jersey recycling centre since 1999. CarpetCycle decided in 2010 that there was a business case to be made for a stronger presence and full expansion into Toronto, Canada. Moreover, the Company felt that Toronto presented a unique opportunity because it is one of the greenest and most environmentally forward thinking cities in the world.

At present, there are more than 36,000 employees at over 1,700 companies providing alternative energy and cleantech products and services. These companies currently generate an estimated $2 billion in annual revenue locally, making the Toronto Region and Ontario, North America's renewable energy leader.

Regional Green Facts

  • In 2010, the Toronto Stock Exchange launched a new index restricted to environmentally friendly companies. Two years after debuting with 21 companies whose major business is the development and use of technologies that promote renewable energy and recycling, the S&P/TSX Clean Technology Index has 131 companies listed.
  • Hydro-electric power accounts for approximately 26% of the province's energy supply with an installed capacity of roughly 8,000 megawatts.
  • Toronto is the home of North America's first urban wind turbine complex, at Exhibition Place, which opened in 2002, and generates 1 million kilowatt hours of power a year.
  • In May 2009, Toronto became the first city in North America to adopt a bylaw requiring green roofs for all new buildings.
  • In 2008, Toronto Mayor, David Miller, was appointed Chair of C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, a push by 40 of the world's biggest cities to lessen the impact of climate change. The C40 is partnering with the Clinton Foundation Initiative to address sustainability and climate issues.

Green Energy

Ontario's commitment to green energy and sustainability motivated the adoption of the landmark Green Energy Act (2009). The Green Energy Act will expedite the growth of clean and renewable sources of energy including wind, solar, hydro, biomass and biogas. The Green Energy Act offers North America's most comprehensive feed-in-tariff incentive, which guarantees energy producers specific rates for energy generated from renewable sources. The Ontario Green Energy Act is "widely recognized now as the single best green energy program on the North American continent."(Al Gore, Former Vice President of the United States, November 2009) To learn more about the Feed-in-Tariff program click here. Moreover, the Green Energy Act is slated to create 50,000 new "green-collar" jobs in Ontario in the next 3 years.

Earlier this year, a consortium led by Samsung C&T Corporation and the Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) selected Ontario to invest $7 billion into wind and solar power generation. This project will triple Ontario's output from renewable wind and solar sources and create more than 16,000 new green energy jobs.

Green Energy Workforce

Source: TRRA, 2007
Hydrogen and fuel cells
  • 26 university programs in engineering, physical material and environment sciences
  • 4,000 university graduates in hydrogen related programs
  • Ranked among the top 8 regions for scientific impact based on number of citations per publication
Solar energy
Wind and turbine
  • 45 programs in environmental science, engineering and sustainable and renewable energy
  • More than 2,700 university graduates
  • Ranked 7th in North America for number of publications on the subjects of wind, turbine and green energy technologies
  • Centre of major acedmic research, with 19 wind technology related experts in five universities

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Green Energy Projects in the Toronto Region

The following are projects currently in process and/or completed:

Ashbridges Bay

Wind Turbine Generator

  • 750kW generator produces enough power for 200 homes
  • Exhibition Place is the home of the 1st urban wind turbine in North America. This was a partnership between Toronto Hydro Energy and WindShare Co-operative.

Solar Photovoltaic

  • 190 solar panels generating 36kW of renewable electricity reducing 37.8 tonnes of C02 annually.
  • Toronto Hydro Energy provided engineering design, project management and implementation of the pilot solar power installation at a Toronto Hydro building. The solar panels provide 12 per cent of the electrical power required to run the building's electricity.

Toronto Community Housing

  • 335kW natural gas-fired high efficiency co-generation located at Toronto Community Housing's 341 Bloor Street facility.
  • Toronto Hydro Energy provided a turn-key design build services for this project.
  • This project is unique in combining emergency power with a combined heat and power system. It's the first of its kind in Toronto and for Toronto Community Housing Corporation.

Exhibition Place

  • 1.6 MW natural gas-fired high efficiency co-generation located at Exhibition Place.
  • Project was completed in 2007.
  • Toronto Hydro Energy provided turn-key design build services for this project.
  • At Exhibition Place, the newly installed system will use a natural gas combustion engine to provide 30 per cent of the facility's energy needs, delivering 1.6 MW of capacity and providing electricity, heating and cooling to buildings at the east end of the grounds.

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Clean Technology

The Toronto region is embracing clean technology. Organizations and businesses are actively seeking out new ways to reduce their environmental footprint.

One of the main areas that Ontario is focused on in the cleantech sector is water technology. It is estimated that the global water technology market is worth $400 billion US dollars per year - and doubling every 5 to 6 years. In the next 20 years, worldwide demand for water is expected to be 40% greater than current supply. Ontario and Toronto, with abundant fresh water resources, are providing solutions.

From water conservation to nanotechnology, Ontario companies are leading the way and employing 22,000 people in high-paying jobs selling water technology around the world. Ontario is an important part of Canada's clean and sustainable future:

  • More than 25% of Canada's cleantech companies are located in Ontario.
  • Water and wastewater technology is the largest sub-sector of Ontario's green economy generating $1.8 billion in sales.
  • Ontario is poised to be a global centre of water excellence and a world-class provider of technologies, services and knowledge for innovative and sustainable water solutions. (The Water Opportunity for Ontario Report)

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Cleantech and Green Energy Incentives

  • The Ontario Emerging Technologies Fund (OETF) is a $250-million five-year commitment by the Ontario government to encourage investments in technology based companies.
  • The $50-million boost over the next 4 years to the Innovation Demonstration Fund (IDF), is aimed at the commercialization of emerging and pilot technologies (preferably in biofuels and alternative energy).
  • The Ontario Tax Exemption for Commercialization (OTEC) program offers a 10-year exemption from Ontario's corporate income tax and corporate minimum tax. This exemption applies to newly established corporations operating businesses in priority areas. The province has allocated $50 million over 5 years to help finance research, capital and demonstration projects leading toward a "smart" electricity grid in Ontario.
  • To improve local demand and lead by example, the province has dedicated $30 million to purchase emerging green technologies developed in Ontario and to showcase them to potential customers around the world.

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Sector Support

Greening Greater Toronto

Greening Greater Toronto works with members of the Green Procurement Leadership Council to develop a program to accelerate corporate procurement of greener products and services and to help drive the success of Ontario's green business and technology sectors. The Green Procurement Leadership Council, represents approximately $45 billion in annual buying power.

For more information on green procurement in the Toronto region see ,Greening Greater Toronto's, Procurement Document Hub


Toronto is also part of the C40, a network of the world's megacities taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Each city in the C40 is unique in its infrastructure and progress in addressing climate change. C40 works to empower cities to connect with each other and share technical expertise on best practices to address climate risks and impacts locally and globally. For more information on C40, click here.

The Toronto Region Sustainability Program (TRSP)

The Toronto Region Sustainability Program is designed to assist small and medium manufacturers in the Toronto region reduce their environment footprint by implementing sustainable practices. Ontario Centre for Environment Technology Advancement (OCETA) delivers this program on behalf of the provincial government and funding partners.

TRSP offers businesses an incentive of 50 cents on the dollar, up to $7,000, to conduct a pollution prevention assessment.

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Industry Trade Associations

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A Bright Green Future, Clean-Tech Asset Map
An analysis of the convergence of technology, policy and capital in Ontario
Year: 2010
Categories: Clean Technology and Green Energy
Funding Programs, Awards and Prizes Available to Ontario Clean-Tech Companies
Document is a compilation of federal and provincial funding sources, both private and public that apply to companies in the Cleantechnology Sector.
Year: N/A
Categories: Clean Technology and Green Energy
Greater Toronto Area Renewable Energy Opportunities
Report on the renewable energy sector in the GTA, including recent Ontario Green Energy Act policy adjustments, designed to develop a green energy economy.
Year: N/A
Categories: Green Energy
Obtaining Patent Protection in Canada
Introduction to the Canadian patent system.
Year: 2009
Categories: Green Energy, ICT (Information and Communications Technology), Life Science, Talent
People, Planet & Profit: Catalyzing Growth & Environmental Quality in the Toronto Region
City of Toronto development strategy for the "green" sector
Year: 2007
Categories: Green Energy
The Power to Live Green
The City of Toronto's sustainable energy strategy.
Year: 2009
Categories: Green Energy, Quality of Life
Vantage Magazine, Greater Toronto
The Greater Toronto Marketing Alliance foreign direct investment magazine looks at Ontario's green sector.
Year: 2010
Categories: Green Energy
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