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Governments invest $27 million for energy efficiency in South Baffin project

The South Baffin Energy Management Project will be receiving about $18.3 million through the Low Carbon Economy Leadership Fund.

“Our government is partnering with the Government of Nunavut to bring forward this positive initiative,"  Northern Affairs Minister Dan Vandal said as he announced the funding August 20. "It is going to cut greenhouse gases. It is going to create jobs, and it's a step in the right direction in terms of environmental sustainability,” said Vandal.

The South Baffin Energy Management Project is expected to reduce of about 24,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, says Northern Affairs Minister Dan Vandal. photo

The project will help to improve energy efficiency and introduce renewable energy in 45 buildings owned by the GN, he said. These buildings are located in the communities of Igloolik, Kimmirut, Kinngait, Pangnirtung, Sanirajak and Sanikiluaq.

The GN’s Department of Community and Government Services is contributing $8.6 million to the project. The department is providing support with retrofits such as implementation of solar panels, applying mechanical and control system upgrades, upgrading lighting to LEDs, and helping with the installation of water-saving fixtures.

Additionally, measures will be taken to include retrofitting the Federal Building in Iqaluit, which is owned by the GN, outfitting buildings with solar photovoltaic systems and equipping one building with a solar hot water system.

Vandal said, “Over the lifetime of this project, the Government of Nunavut will see a cumulative reduction of about 24,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.” That is equivalent to removing about 7,000 passenger cars off the road for one year, he explained.

The project is also expected to create 300 jobs in the territory. “That's a positive thing,” said the minister, adding “Employment is a huge issue, especially in this era that we are in.”

The project started in August 2019 and is expected to be completed by March 2022.

The goal is to achieve a net zero emissions by 2050, emphasized Vandal.

“So I'm positive, there's going to be many more agreements signed and positive projects coming forward in the future.”