From: Natalie Armstrong, Reuters
Published June 21, 2007 12:00 AM

Ontario Sets Plan for Home Refits, Solar Power

TORONTO -- The Ontario government said Wednesday it will spend C$150 million ($142 million) to subsidize household energy retrofits and solar power installations.

The plan from Canada's most populous province will pay up to C$5,000 for installation of Energy Star approved furnaces as well as items such as solar water heaters and insulation.

"It's money back in their (consumers') pockets for making energy efficient changes to their home and their lifestyle," said Steve Irwin, spokesman for Ontario Energy Minister Dwight Duncan.

The government will also drop the provincial sales tax for a year on Energy Star items such as light bulbs, refrigerators, dishwashers, clothes washers, freezers, dehumidifiers and air conditioners.

It said it has set a target of 100,000 household solar power system installations across the province and plans to create a task force of experts to help implement that goal, although it gave no timetable.

The program is the latest in a wave of climate-change related announcements by Premier Dalton McGuinty's government ahead of an election to be held this autumn.

The Liberal government has promised to cut the province's greenhouse gas emissions to 6 per cent below 1990 levels by 2014, 15 per cent by 2020 and an 80 percent reduction by 2050.

Source: Reuters

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