Government of Canada supports innovative climate action by the City of Toronto

News release

August 21, 2020 – Toronto, Ontario

As Canada begins to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government’s top priority remains the health, safety, and well-being of all Canadians. That includes working to help the economy recover, creating new green jobs, reducing emissions, and making life more affordable for Canadians.

Today, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, the Honourable Marco E.L. Mendicino, on behalf of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, announced up to $1.1 million from the Low Carbon Economy Fund to support the City of Toronto in reducing emissions from their ambulances and emergency paramedic response units.

This investment will go toward installing solar panels on the roofs of 215 ambulances and more than 60 emergency paramedic response units, which will power and recharge critical on-board medical equipment. The funding will also help install a hybrid electric drivetrain system in more than 100 ambulances to save fuel and reduce emissions. Thanks to this funding, the City of Toronto will reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by an amount equivalent to removing approximately 2,900 passenger cars off the road for one year.

The funding comes from the Champions stream of the Government of Canada’s Low Carbon Economy Challenge, which invests in projects that reduce carbon pollution, save money, and create good jobs.

Canada’s climate plan is on track to deliver the largest emissions reduction in the country’s history. The Government will continue to bring forward new and enhanced climate action measures to exceed our 2030 target and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.


“Canadians expect that their government put a greener economy at the heart of our economic development, and that’s exactly what we’ll do. This project will help the City of Toronto protect the environment and improve air quality while growing our economy. We’re supporting Canadians across the country to make the transition to a cleaner and more prosperous future through initiatives like this one because every action can make a difference and protect the environment for our kids.”

– The Honourable Marco E.L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship

“I want to thank the Government of Canada and Minister Wilkinson for this new funding through the Low Carbon Economy Fund. This investment in our Toronto Paramedic Services will help us in achieving our target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions and our goals through the TransformTO plan. The City has been working hard to retrofit and modernize the Toronto Paramedic Services, and this new funding will provide much needed support for our City of Toronto Paramedic Service Fleet Retrofit Project. By partnering with other levels of government, our city can continue to be at the forefront of these changes and find innovative and unique methods of addressing the impacts of climate change.”

– John Tory, Mayor of the City of Toronto

“As part of our commitment to green initiatives, Toronto Paramedic Services will retrofit our fleet for low-carbon operations. The demand for our services continues to grow each year, and green technologies such as solar panels and hybrid electric drivetrain systems allow us to reduce the use of fossil fuels as well as to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and air pollutants. This investment provides an incredible opportunity to meet some of our long-term sustainability goals and contributes to the City’s TransformTO initiative. Toronto Paramedic Services is greening our fleet to reduce our carbon footprint for the future well-being of all Torontonians, including youth aspiring to be paramedics.”

– Gord McEachen, Acting Chief of Toronto Paramedic Services

Quick facts

  • The solar panels have an estimated life of approximately 20 years; the hybrid electric drivetrain system, about 12 years.

  • The City of Toronto’s paramedic services is the largest municipal ambulance fleet in Canada. This retrofit project promotes the best-in-class technologies and standards toward a clean-growth community for other Canadian municipalities.

  • The Champions stream of the Low Carbon Economy Fund is an important part of Canada’s climate action plan, and it’s helping put Canada on a path to meet and beat our Paris Agreement target for 2030

Associated links


Moira Kelly
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Twitter page

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Facebook page

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