Ontario announces phase two of natural gas expansion in rural, northern and Indigenous communities
June 15, 2021 By Ontario Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines
The Ontario government is expanding access to natural gas across the province to help keep the cost of energy low for families, businesses and farmers.
Phase 2 of the Natural Gas Expansion Program will allocate more than $234 million to support approximately 8750 connections in 43 rural, northern and Indigenous communities.
“We’re making good on our promise to deliver affordable energy and expand natural gas pipelines to more communities, while at the same time improving economic development and creating thousands of new jobs,” says Ontario Premier Doug Ford.
Phase 2 will support economic development in the Hamilton and Niagara areas with expansion projects planned for Grimsby-Lincoln and the Hamilton Airport and surrounding areas. The projects are expected to create approximately 5000 jobs within these communities.
Businesses are expected to save up to 30 per cent on energy costs per year. The average household could save between $250 to $1,500 per year in energy costs by switching to natural gas from costlier fuel sources.
“EPCOR is looking forward to expanding our natural gas infrastructure and connecting neighbours to an affordable, reliable, convenient and clean source of energy. Under the province’s Phase 2 expansion, more families, farms and businesses throughout rural Ontario will be able to access natural gas while generating economic development in the region,” says Susannah Robinson, Vice President, Ontario Region, EPCOR
Construction for projects under Phase 2 will begin as soon as this year, with all 28 expansion projects expected to be underway by the end of 2025. Two expansion projects will directly benefit Indigenous communities, specifically the Red Rock First Nation and the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte First Nation.
Phase 1 and 2 projects are funded through a $1-per-month charge to existing natural gas customers.
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