N.S. to invest $18M to support energy efficiency, renewable energy programs
Investments will save Nova Scotians about $1.8M a year on energy bills
Nova Scotia has announced it will invest nearly $18 million into energy efficiency and renewable energy programs.
The money will come from the provincial Green Fund, which was created through the province's cap-and-trade program.
"The Green Fund is meant to help fight climate change in our province, and these projects will do that," Environment Minister Gordon Wilson said in a news release Tuesday.
The value of the fund after two cap-and-trade auctions last year was $28.7 million.
Last week, opposition politicians questioned the Nova Scotia government's commitment to the environment following delays related to key legislation.
New Democrat MLA Claudia Chender said the government was taking too long to act on an issue that had reached a crisis level.
Chender pointed to the Green Fund, which at the time, was mostly unspent.
$1.8M in annual energy bill savings
The new investments will include:
- $5.5 million over two years for the Solar Homes program, which offers rebates to homeowners installing solar panels.
- $6.7 million over three years for the affordable multi-family housing program, which provides incentives for energy efficiency upgrades in affordable housing projects.
- $3.5 million over three years for the small business and not-for-profit energy solutions program, which offers incentives for energy efficiency upgrades for small businesses and non-profit organizations.
- $2 million over five years for the Clean Leadership program, to allow youth interns to work on climate change projects across the province.
These investments in energy efficiency will save Nova Scotians about $1.8 million a year on their energy bills, the news release said.
It will also create about 192 jobs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 6,000 tonnes each year.
The $2 million going to the Clean Leadership program over five years will create 175 youth internships.
"This means we'll be able to offer more internship opportunities for students, and help develop the next generation of Nova Scotian leaders passionate about fighting climate change and transitioning to a low-carbon economy," said Scott Skinner, the president and CEO of Clean Foundation.
The province said there is $9.2 million remaining in the Green Fund for future projects.