Guelph’s plan to become a net zero carbon community
We have a plan to use less energy, reduce carbon emissions and mitigate the effects of climate change, and we can’t do it alone.
The community has joined in
- Guelph has 49 per cent more rooftop solar arrays per capita than the provincial average – may be due in part to Guelph’s relatively low flat fee for rooftop solar building permits.
- Guelph Hydro-Alectra owns and operates a 2.5 megawatt power plant fuelled by landfill gas from the former Eastview landfill site.
- The University of Guelph installed a thermal energy storage system, partly funded by students, which cools campus buildings with clean, off-peak power
- Canadian Solar is headquartered in Guelph – the only top-three global supplier of solar PV modules not based in China
- Magna’s Polycon manufacturing facility has an 8 megawatt cogeneration plant – they’re making enough electricity to power about 6,000 homes so they buy less from the grid.
Watch the interview with Kirby Calvert, co-chair of Our Energy Guelph
“Our Energy Guelph brings together the capacities of the business sector, non-government organizations and citizens in our community doing the things that governments and the municipality cannot do.”
City facilities and operations to use 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050
Currently, about 23 per cent of the energy used by the City comes from renewable sources. By using less energy and choosing renewable sources, we’re planning to use 100 per cent renewable energy for all our facilities and operations by 2050.
Results so far
From 2013 to 2017 Guelph’s Corporate Energy Management Plan saved the City $1.5 million in utility costs.
- Several City buildings have LED lighting and automated heating, cooling and ventilation systems to optimize energy use
- A 575 kilowatt cogeneration system at Guelph’s wastewater facility uses methane from the wastewater treatment process to generate power used at the plant.
- Four City facilities have solar water heaters and nine properties have a total of 88 kilowatts of rooftop solar arrays – enough power for 10 average households
- LED street lights being installed to reduce energy and costs
- LED traffic light upgrades paid for themselves more quickly than expected
- Guelph Transit route changes helped increase ridership
- The City of Guelph fleet has several hybrid gas-electric vehicles
- A 400 kilowatt cogeneration system at the West End Community Centre supplies electricity and heat on site, and waste heat from the pools is recovered to preheat fresh pool water.
October 11, 2018
March 15, 2018
More ways Guelph is responding to climate change
In addition to using less fuel and energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, Guelph is working to ensure our community is prepared to withstand and recover from the effects such as more frequent and severe storms.