Dec 20, 2019
Greenhouses located in Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent can now take advantage of an enhanced LED incentive to help reduce energy costs and help the province better manage growing energy needs in the area. Offered through the IESO’s Save on Energy Retrofit program, the incentive is being tripled and covers around 30 per cent of the overall project costs for local customers.
Electricity demand is growing fast in Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent, driven by strong agricultural growth. In Windsor-Essex, electricity demand is expected to double over the next five years. A recent study shows that vegetable and fruit greenhouses are the largest driver of growth, while cannabis is starting to have an impact as growers ramp up their operations.
As the most cost-effective energy resources, energy efficiency provides a valuable resource to help offset increasing demand in the region while supporting business growth and competitiveness.
“LEDs are relatively new technology for the agriculture sector,” says Terry Young, Vice President of Policy, Engagement and Innovation, IESO. “By testing this initiative in Windsor-Essex and Chatham-Kent, we will see how enhanced incentives can help us better align energy efficiency in areas where there are specific system needs.”
The increased incentive will be offered for a limited time, and be available for both lighting retrofit and new construction projects. Converting from inefficient technologies like High Pressure Sodium bulbs to LEDs can save up to 55 per cent in monthly electricity costs. Learning how customers respond in this local area will help inform future incentives for other communities.
“Energy efficiency is a major driver in the greenhouse sector and our members are keen to explore opportunities to reduce costs through the adoption of new technologies and innovation,” says Justine Taylor, Science & Government Relations Manager, Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers. “As we transition to year-round production through the use of supplemental lighting, this need becomes even more pressing. OGVG looks forward to continued collaboration with IESO to ensure our Ontario greenhouse sector remains competitive for years to come.”
Go HERE for more information on the program