Ontario investing up to $657 million in green social housing infrastructure

Ontario is providing new funding for repairs and retrofits to social housing across the province in order to improve living conditions and fight climate change. This investment is part of Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan and is funded by proceeds from the province’s carbon market.

Peter Milczyn, Minister of Housing and the Minister Responsible for Poverty Reduction, was in Toronto today to make the announcement. The province will invest up to $657 million for repairs and retrofits to social housing apartment buildings over five years, contingent on carbon market proceeds. The City of Toronto will receive approximately half of this total investment.

The investment will help improve the lives of low-income and vulnerable tenants with upgrades to social housing buildings such as new energy efficient heating, improved insulation, and window replacements. It also represents an example of Ontario’s ongoing efforts to support the transition of homes and businesses to a low-carbon future, while providing the jobs and skills that will allow individuals to thrive in a sustainable economy.

Proceeds from Ontario’s carbon market must by law be invested into programs that help households and businesses reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save money on energy costs. Programs include home energy retrofits, public transit, social housing retrofits, and electric vehicle incentives and infrastructure.

The province’s five-year investment of carbon market proceeds to social housing repairs and retrofits in the City of Toronto includes contributions of $43 million in 2016-17, almost $120 million in 2017-18, and up to $180 million between 2018-19 and 2020-21. Repairs and retrofits delivered through the first year of the five-year investment are already underway in Toronto Community Housing buildings, as part of its capital repair budget.

Ontario is also investing more than $2 billion over the next three years in affordable and sustainable housing across the province, including millions more for repairs and retrofits to social housing buildings. Under the Green Investment Fund, the province has already invested $82 million on energy retrofits for high-rise social housing towers of 150 units or more.

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