In 2018, the City of Toronto will begin work on 10 major projects with the support of $52 million in funding from the Province of Ontario’s Municipal Challenge Fund. These projects are expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 560,000* tonnes. The 10 projects are:

* This figure was updated May 31, 2018 to reflect the estimated GHG reductions over the life of the projects, as indicated in Province-City funding agreements.

The TTC will replace 30 clean diesel buses with 30 battery electric buses (BEBs). The procurement of 30 BEBs will allow for the TTC to verify all aspects of performance including vehicle reliability, service availability, battery charge time, driving range, maintainability and total cost of ownership. The results will assist the TTC and industry at large with the development of battery electric bus specifications for future procurements.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $10,000,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 54,000 tonnes

The City will begin installing a new biogas upgrading facility at the Dufferin Solid Waste Management Facility later this year. The new equipment will allow the City to transform the raw biogas produced – from processing Toronto’s Green Bin organics – into renewable natural gas (RNG) and inject that gas into the natural gas grid. The first cubic metre of RNG is expected to be produced by the third quarter of 2019.

This project is one of the first of its kind in Canada and North America and will allow the City to reduce fuel costs for its fleet of collection trucks and significantly reduce its carbon footprint.

In addition to helping the City reach its climate action goals, biogas upgrading also helps achieve the goals of the City’s Long Term Waste Management Strategy as well as its goal of becoming the first city in Ontario with a circular economy.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $10,000,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 142,946 tonnes


This project will accelerate the conversion to low-carbon vehicles. It includes:

  • replacing 220 City light-duty gasoline-powered internal combustion engine vehicles with electric vehicles – including 156 battery electric
    and 64 Plug-in Hybrid vehicles;
  • installing 24 DC Fast Charging Stations and one DC Fast Charger Solar Carport at the Toronto Island;
  • installing small diesel drive generators on 60 Pumper & Rescue style fire trucks that will function as idle reduction systems
  • installing anti-idling systems on 142 ambulances

Municipal Challenge Funding: $5,841,283

Estimated GHG reductions: 21,023 tonnes

EMS Headquarters will undergo a building-wide energy retrofit which will result in annual energy savings of 1,186,000 kWh of electricity and 232,000 m3 of natural gas. The retrofit will include: all interior and exterior lights retrofitted to low-wattage LEDS; exterior doors and windows replaced to reduce the cooling load of the building; a heat recovery ventilation system employed to reduce the heating and cooling loads of the building; a ground-source heat pump system will be installed and replace the building’s existing heating and cooling systems.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $872,321

Estimated GHG reductions: 11,380 tonnes

The City of Toronto’s first Net Zero facility, an Early Learning and Childcare Centre, will be constructed in the Mount Dennis neighbourhood. The key strategies to achieve net zero are:

  • designing to Passive House standards to drastically reduce energy requirements; and
  • meeting all remaining energy needs with a combination of a ground- or air-source heat pump system, and solar photovoltaics (PV).

Municipal Challenge Funding: $500,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 1,465 tonnes

A renewable geo-exchange system will be installed at the St. Lawrence Market, one of the most important historical sites in Toronto. Conductivity testing, completed in 2014, indicates that this site has ideal subsurface conditions for ground-source heating and cooling. The existing building, a slab-on-grade-structure that replaced the original 19th-century North Market, was demolished in 2016.

A 60-hole borefield coupled to a high-efficiency ground-source heat pump will provide heating and cooling to the new St. Lawrence Market North building. As a result, the building is expected to consume 75% less natural gas and 51% less energy overall.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $792,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 4,229 tonnes

A renewable thermal energy system will be developed to serve the Etobicoke Civic Centre (ECC) Precinct, a City-owned brownfield development master-planned to be Toronto’s first Net Zero Community.

The Low-Carbon Thermal Energy Network (LCTEN) will interconnect distributed, geo-exchange bore fields beneath each building, and under a new park through a distribution network, that maximizes heat recovery and energy sharing. System components will include:

  • thermal energy centres with ground-source heat pumps in parking levels;
  • thermal distribution system hung from the ceilings of parking levels; and
  • heat recovery from the sanitary wastewater of each building.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $5,000,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 91,903 tonnes

A geo-exchange thermal energy network will be developed to serve seven existing condominium buildings in Liberty Village. City-owned land south of the buildings will provide the space for the borefield.

Thermal energy from the geo-exchange system will be distributed to the mechanical rooms of each building, facilitated by a new riser pipe. Geo-exchange will contribute 85% of required space heating and domestic hot water energy, and 74% of space cooling energy.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $6,900,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 120,093 tonnes

A hybrid geo-exchange thermal energy network (district energy system) will be developed as part of the redevelopment of the City-owned Canada Square Lands at 2180 and 2200 Yonge Street.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $10,000,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 99,304 tonnes

A near zero emissions geo-exchange thermal energy network (district energy system) will be developed as part of a new affordable housing development on a City-owned property at 253 Markham Road.

A geo-exchange system will satisfy 100% of the space heating and cooling requirement, and 100% of the heat required for domestic hot water.

Municipal Challenge Funding: $1,900,000

Estimated GHG reductions: 12,645 tonnes