Environment & Energy
Worldwide, damage due to climate change, storm damage and flooding has totalled more than 6 trillion since 1980, with weather-related insurance claims increasing on average by 11% per year. Meanwhile, thanks to a changing climate, it is predicted that Toronto will have hotter, drier summers - with many more days of extreme heat - along with wetter, stormier winters.
The City of Toronto established Toronto Atmospheric Fund in 1991 to focus on reducing local greenhouse gas and air pollution emissions. Working with a $23 million endowment from the sale of the long-closed Langstaff Jail Farm, TAF operates as an arms-length agency at no cost to the City. TAF helps the City achieve the targets set out in the Council-approved climate plan and supports energy cost savings through energy efficiency. TAF-supported projects such as a streetlighting retrofit, traffic light LED conversion, and building retrofits have generated $55 million in savings for the city to date.
TAF deploys three programs - Incubating Climate Solutions, Mobilizing Financial Capital, and Mobilizing Social Capital - to address Toronto's major emissions sources: buildings and transportation. Based on a careful study of Toronto's emissions profile, TAF has a strong interest in energy efficiency retrofits in buildings, electric vehicles for fleets, efficient transportation of goods, natural gas alternatives like geothermal, and social innovation to support emission reduction strategies.
TAF was nominated for the 2013 Scotiabank EcoLiving Innovator's Award. The nomination recognized the Energy Savings Performance Agreement as a game-changer in the energy efficiency retrofit market.
TAF is looking for a Low Carbon Building Science Specialist with a starting date of May 5, 2014. Energy-use in the built environment accounts for approximately 50% of Toronto’s greenhouse gas emissions and is our current priority focus area. Through its internally managed TowerWise program, TAF is involved in a growing number of building science related research and demonstration projects.TAF also administers a Grants Program that provides funding for greenhouse gas reduction projects and research led by partners in the municipal, academic, and not-for-profit sectors. The Low Carbon Building Science Specialist will provide technical support for internal and external projects related to energy-use in the built environment.
Toronto Atmospheric Fund has been shortlisted for the prestigious 2014 FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards in the Achievement in Transformational Finance category. The full list of shortlisted nominees is now available here. TAF is being recognized by the Financial Times (FT) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC) for our unique approach to financing low-carbon projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution. Finalists have used the market to create long-term, transformative solutions to environmental, social and corporate governance challenges. The winners will be announced at the FT/ IFC Transformational Business Awards dinner which will take place at the InterContinental London Park Lane in London on June 12.
The Toronto Atmospheric Fund looks forward to hosting you at our Annual Meeting and Reception, Monday April 28, 2014, in the Member’s Lounge at Toronto City Hall, from 5:30pm – 7:30pm.
Given our priority focus on making Toronto’s biggest buildings more energy efficient, we welcome remarks from Michael Brooks, CEO of REALpac. REALpac is a national industry association representing owners of large real estate portfolios.
Please join TAF’s Board, Committee members, staff, and our many colleagues as we profile TAF’s achievements, contributions, partners and future projects.
TAF gratefully acknowledges our AGM sponsors Gardiner Roberts LLP and the Royal Bank of Canada.
The possible adoption of an energy reporting requirement for owners of large commercial and multi-residential buildings in Toronto was the topic under discussion at TAF’s recent Dan Leckie Forum. The forum is an annual event where we bring together stakeholders of varied backgrounds to brainstorm about ways to reduce urban-generated GHG emissions or address air pollution. This year, we investigated an energy-use reporting policy that is already in place in many U.S. cities and abroad. An analysis of 35,000 buildings in the U.S. that benchmarked energy use between 2008 and 2011 demonstrated a correlation between this kind of reporting mechanism and a decrease in energy consumption. Given that Toronto’s large building stock contributes approximately 50% of the city’s GHG emissions, adopting an energy-reporting policy would support Toronto’s efforts to meet its reduction targets by 2020. Earlier this month, the city’s Parks and Environment Committee decided that city staff should explore an energy reporting requirement and report back to Council with recommendations by March 2015. City Council will consider the committee’s recommendation the first week of April.