Last year, the City of Brampton received a proposal for two electricity supply options from energy company Capital Power: they could either deepen their dependency on natural gas by expanding the Goreway Power Station, or use batteries to better manage the peaks and valleys of local electricity demand. Brampton chose the battery storage system. With electricity emissions in Ontario increasing this year by 26% in the GTHA, municipalities have a responsibility to follow Brampton's lead and reject proposals for new or expanded natural gas plants in favour of cleaner and more affordable options.
Ontario increased the budget for the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) retrofit incentive program by $342 million. The program is geared toward businesses, including initiatives for greenhouses, targeted areas of Ontario, and smart thermostat users, and is part of the government's 2021-2024 Conservation and Demand Management Framework. It is expected to achieve 725 megawatts of peak demand savings, 3.8 terawatt-hours of electricity savings and cut three million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions over its lifetime. The province should continue expanding this cost-effective and successful program.
Canada's proposed federal zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) sales targets will result in cumulative carbon reduction impacts estimated at 430 megatonnes. Beyond the well-known climate impacts, implementation of the ZEV regulation will dramatically reduce transportation sector emissions of criteria air contaminants. These pollutants are associated with adverse health effects such as premature mortality, increased hospitalizations, cardiovascular disease, lung cancer, and other chronic respiratory diseases. TAF analysis demonstrated that the regulation will also create $90 billion in health benefits for Canadians over the next 25 years, including up to 11,000 avoided premature deaths.