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Canada and FCM Invest in National Capital Region’s First Net-Zero Community

Press Release

From: Natural Resources Canada

April 7, 2021                                                        Ottawa, Ontario                                            Natural Resources Canada

In communities across the country, Canadians are experiencing the impacts of climate change. By investing in new technologies and projects that lower emissions, we can create good, middle-class jobs and build a low-emissions energy future and economy. This commitment is more important than ever as we plan our recovery from the COVID-19 crisis.

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., Minister of Natural Resources; the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities; and Garth Frizzell, President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), today announced a $23-million investment to Hydro Ottawa through FCM’s Green Municipal Fund (GMF) to create a district energy (DE) system for Ottawa–Gatineau’s carbon-neutral Zibi waterfront development.

This innovative DE system will help achieve Zibi’s environmental objectives of transforming 34 acres of brownfield lands between Ottawa and Gatineau’s urban core into the National Capital Region’s first net-zero community. The DE system will eliminate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from building heating and cooling operations by leveraging locally generated hydroelectricity, river-coupled cooling from the Ottawa River and waste industrial heat from the local Kruger Products plant.

This project shows that the GMF continues to build on its 20-year record of supporting transformative environmental initiatives at the municipal level. The Government of Canada has invested $1.65 billion in the GMF since its inception, enabling municipalities to support projects like this that leverage local resources to drive innovative solutions.

The government continues to support smarter energy initiatives that build a healthier and cleaner future while also creating new jobs and economic growth for all Canadians.

Quotes

“Improvements in energy efficiency will get us a third of the way to our Paris targets. Ottawa–Gatineau’s first net-zero community will lower emissions and increase the viability of district energy systems.”

Seamus O’Regan Jr.
Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources

“Investing in innovative solutions to reduce emissions is critical to tackling climate change. The Zibi project will develop the National Capital Region’s first district energy system to provide zero-carbon heating and cooling to residents, and it is positioned to be the most sustainable community in Canada. In partnership with the FCM, federal funding will help make this exciting project a reality, creating jobs and building a cleaner, more inclusive community right here in the heart of Ottawa.”

Catherine McKenna
Canada’s Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

“Municipalities are leaders on climate change and want to see tangible actions that support local efforts to reduce GHG emissions. This is one of the biggest investments made by FCM’s Green Municipal Fund. We’re delivering world-recognized programs that help communities do what they do best: deliver solutions that work. Projects like the Zibi district energy system could be replicated and scaled up across the country for deep national impact.”

Garth Frizzell
President, Federation of Canadian Municipalities

“The Zibi project represents the kind of community development we want to have in Gatineau, thanks to the effort being made to reduce its environmental footprint. The funding announced today will strengthen this environmental aspect of the project by supporting an innovative and energy-efficient heating solution.”

Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin
Mayor of Gatineau

“This project is a wonderful example of how local and federal government, private industry and our local utilities can successfully collaborate on the creation of transformative green infrastructure.  I want to take this opportunity to recognize and thank the Government of Canada, and FCM, for their support and funding for this groundbreaking and innovative green project.”

Laura Dudas
Deputy Mayor of Ottawa

“At Hydro Ottawa, we believe it is our responsibility to help build a vibrant and sustainable capital and provide our customers and our community with a clean supply of energy that powers the future responsibly and protects our environment. As the local utility, we have the expertise to help elevate the economic prosperity of our city, not only with the reliable power we provide but also with the kinds of projects we invest in, infrastructure we build and partnerships we enter into. We also have the expertise to carve a path forward into that clean and sustainable energy future. This successful funding from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Green Municipal Fund in support of the Zibi Community Utility proves that we are investing in the right kinds of projects with the right partners. I couldn’t be more proud.”

Bryce Conrad
Chief Executive Officer, Ottawa Hydro

“We are grateful to the Government of Canada and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Green Municipal Fund for this funding, which brings us closer to meeting our vision for creating a sustainability showpiece in the heart of the nation’s capital. Our hope is that Zibi’s Community Utility will not only achieve net-zero heating and cooling within Zibi but also that our project will become a model for communities around the world on how to create innovative partnerships that help them do the same.”

Jeff Westeinde
President, Zibi

Associated links

Contacts

Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada
Ottawa
343-292-6100
NRCan.media.RNCan@canada.ca

Ian Cameron
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Natural Resources
613-447-3488
Ian.Cameron@canada.ca

FCM Media Relations
613-907-6395
media@fcm.ca

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