Grants for Energy Saving Upgrades

Glenys Verhulst

City Green Solutions

Do you want to shrink your household carbon and energy footprint? If so, there are many programs and incentives available to help lower your home’s greenhouse gas emissions and make your home more energy efficient, comfortable, and affordable to heat.

In BC

If you live in BC, visit www.citygreen.ca/incentives for a list of over a hundred energy efficient construction and retrofit incentives for homes and buildings, including programs for low-income renters, homeowners, and housing providers. The database is maintained by City Green, a BC-based  enterprising non-profit with a mission to excite, inspire and lead British Columbians in finding innovative home and building energy efficiency solutions.

In Alberta

If you live in Alberta, visit http://climatechangecentral.com/my-rebates/available-rebates for a list of provincial and local government incentives. The list is maintained by C3, an Alberta-based non-profit that encourages energy efficiency and the small-scale use of alternative energy sources.

In All Provinces:

  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) provides a rebate on your Mortgage Loan Insurance for buying an energy efficient home or making upgrades to an existing home. http://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/co/moloin/moloin_008.cfm
  • Your province may have incentive programs. Visit the federal government’s listing at http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/residential/personal/retrofit/272 to find out more.
  • Utilities often have incentive programs for energy efficiency upgrades – contact your local utility.
  • Financial institutions often have special loans available for energy efficiency upgrades – contact your bank or credit union.
  • Local governments may have energy efficiency incentives as well – ask at your local building permit office.

Grants for Energy Efficient New Home Construction

If you are building or buying a new house, it pays to design for energy efficiency right from the start. Working with a Certified Energy Advisor is a great way to learn about the best energy efficiency options for your project, and to prove the energy efficiency that you reach in order to qualify for available incentives. Visit http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/corporate/1513 for a list of incentives across the country, or ask your builder about the EnerGuide Rating Service and the ENERGY STAR® for New Homes Initiative.

Save ecoENERGY!

On January 29, 2012, the federal government closed the ecoENERGY Retrofit – Homes program to new entrants. The ecoENERGY program provided grants of up to $5,000 for homeowners who made energy efficiency upgrades, and participating homes reduced their energy use by an average of 20%. The program has helped create jobs in local communities, helped families make upgrades and keep their energy bills affordable, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions across the country. If you are in agreement with industry associations, environmental groups and homeowners nationwide that the ecoENERGY program should be renewed, visit www.saveecoenergy.ca to learn more and send a message to Ottawa to renew the ecoENERGY grants.

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[From WS March/April 2012]

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