Canadian Biomass Magazine

Canada, FCM invest in creation of district energy system for National Capital Region

April 7, 2021
By Natural Resources Canada

A $23-million investment has been made to Hydro Ottawa through the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ (FCM) Green Municipal Fund (GMF) to create a district energy system for Ottawa–Gatineau’s carbon-neutral Zibi waterfront development.

The district energy system will help achieve Zibi’s environmental objectives of transforming 34 acres of brownfield lands between Ottawa and Gatineau’s urban core into the National Capital Region’s first net-zero community. The system will eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from building heating and cooling operations by leveraging locally generated hydroelectricity, river-coupled cooling from the Ottawa River and waste industrial heat from the local Kruger Products plant.

This project shows that the GMF continues to build on its 20-year record of supporting transformative environmental initiatives at the municipal level. The Canadian government has invested $1.65 billion in the GMF since its inception, enabling municipalities to support projects like this that leverage local resources to drive innovative solutions.

“Improvements in energy efficiency will get us a third of the way to our Paris targets,” Seamus O’Regan Jr., Canada’s minister of natural resources, said. “Ottawa–Gatineau’s first net-zero community will lower emissions and increase the viability of district energy systems.”


Garth Frizzell, president, Federation of Canadian Municipalities, said municipalities are leaders on climate change and want to see tangible actions that support local efforts to reduce GHG emissions.

“This is one of the biggest investments made by FCM’s Green Municipal Fund,” he said. “We’re delivering world-recognized programs that help communities do what they do best: deliver solutions that work. Projects like the Zibi district energy system could be replicated and scaled up across the country for deep national impact.”

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