More good news on the energy front

March 12, 2014

Community Energy Planning

Canadian Solar Smart Grid announcement1

From left to right: MPP Liz Sandals; Mayor Farbridge; Rob Kerr, General Manager of Guelph Municipal Holdings Inc; Brian Lu, Senior Director, Canadian Solar; Brian Walmark, COO, NCC Development.

Here are my speaking notes from an announcement this morning of $2.9 million from the Province of Ontario to create a  Renewable Energy Microgrid Testing Centre at Canadian Solar.

On behalf of the City of Guelph, congratulations to Canadian Solar on this funding to establish the Renewable Energy Microgrid Test Centre.

The Province’s support for innovative energy solutions is very welcome.

I want to recognize Guelph Hydro Inc, which supported the application process for this funding, and will be participating in the lab activities. This is a good example of Guelph Hydro’s strong partnership role in the implementation of Guelph’s Community Energy Initiative.

I also want to thank and recognize the Province for their leadership in establishing a smart grid, supported by smart meters in homes and businesses across Ontario.

Guelph Hydro Inc. is one of just a few Hydro providers in Ontario that installed smart meters that are enabled with a ZigBee chip.  So congratulations to them for their leadership as well.

Guelph is proud that we will be home to this leading-edge Test Centre, which will develop all-in-one renewable energy systems.

This is one more example of how Guelph is becoming the gateway community for integrated energy solutions in North America.

It’s been an exciting couple of months for sustainable energy in Guelph.

In January, we announced the first step in a planned city-wide district energy network: a downtown District Energy System located at the Sleeman Centre. 

In mid-February, I accepted – on behalf of the City – a Sustainable Communities Award from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, in recognition of Guelph’s Community Energy Initiative.

Shortly after that, I travelled to Germany with the President of the Guelph Chamber of Commerce to promote Guelph as a gateway to the North American market for energy-related businesses. 

We spoke to a number of leading European cleantech and energy-sector companies and to senior trade commissioners.

Our message was that Guelph wants to develop a centre of excellence in thermal energy, and more broadly energy management, in our city.

The message was well-received.

Guelph is recognized as a leader in Ontario and Canada when it comes to sustainable energy and addressing climate change.

The presence of Canadian Solar’s headquarters in our city is an important part of that reputation.

In fact, it was Canadian Solar’s decision to locate in Guelph that first made tangible the significant economic development potential of our Community Energy Initiative.

Guelph’s leadership in energy distinguishes our city in a highly competitive, global market for attracting jobs, investment, resources, and talent.

The presence of the Renewable Energy Microgrid Test Centre at Canadian Solar will strengthen that position.

It will support our goal of developing an internationally-recognized centre of excellence in energy management here in Guelph.

So again, I want to congratulate Canadian Solar on this exciting and leading-edge project.

I want to thank Guelph Hydro Inc. for its support of the application and its participation moving forward.

And, I want to thank the Province of Ontario for its support of renewable energy systems, and its recognition of the tremendous economic development opportunities that exist in the energy sector.

Guelph is proud that we are becoming a North American leader and gateway for energy innovation.

Thank you.

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About Karen Farbridge

An unwavering change maker seeking a just, democratic and sustainable world.

View all posts by Karen Farbridge

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