Budget shows continued commitment to growing a clean economy and investing in reducing carbon pollution

Toronto, ON – Ontario’s budget shows that the province remains committed to growing a low-carbon, clean economy. The budget breaks down how revenues from cap-and-trade will be reinvested back into cutting greenhouse gas emissions while supporting Ontarians in taking action to fight climate change.

The budget allocates nearly $400 million to support businesses and homeowners in adopting low-carbon technology, commits $200 million for improving energy efficiency in schools, and dedicates $85 million to retrofitting social housing. It also sets aside $50 million for investments in cycling and over $20 million for electric vehicle charging.

As well, the budget shows that Ontario remains committed to building public transit and smarter cities. The spending on public transit is projected to be twice that spent on highways, offering more Ontarians the option of a clean commute.

Missing from the budget, however, are new resources to protect Ontario’s freshwater. Ontario is home to 20 per cent of the world’s freshwater. Ontario passed the Great Lakes Protection Act, but our water resources are still in need of more financial resources to enable that protection.

Also missing from Ontario’s budget is more progress on the commitment to reform provincial fossil fuel subsidies. Fossil fuel subsidies act as a negative price on carbon, and lead to over $600 million in forgone revenue each year.

This budget makes it clear that Ontarians do not have to choose between the environment and the economy. Not only has the province taken decisive steps towards a low-carbon economy, but it has also delivered a balanced budget that is projecting strong growth in the years ahead.

About ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENCE (www.environmentaldefence.ca): Environmental Defence is Canada’s most effective environmental action organization. We challenge, and inspire change in government, business and people to ensure a greener, healthier and prosperous life for all.

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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact: Allen Braude, Environmental Defence, 416-323-9521 ext 247; 416-356-2587 (cell) abraude@environmentaldefence.ca