Major office landlords, tenants team up to tackle energy waste

22 million sq ft already pledged in effort to reduce energy use by 10 per cent

May 19, 2011 – TORONTO – CivicAction‘s Greening Greater Toronto today challenged Toronto region office building landlords and tenants to significantly reduce their energy use by entering its friendly but competitive Race to Reduce.

The Race to Reduce, developed by Greening Greater Toronto’s Commercial Building Energy Leadership Council, is an unprecedented collaboration between building landlords and tenants to bring about smarter energy use. It is open to all landlords and tenants of office buildings across the Toronto region.

The goal of the four-year program is for landlords and tenants to work together to reduce the total energy use in participating office buildings by at least 10 per cent. Office buildings account for close to 20 per cent of the Greater Toronto Area’s carbon emissions, 37 per cent of its electricity consumption, and 17 per cent of its natural gas consumption.

Even before the Race to Reduce‘s official launch today, 36 major landlords and tenants have entered 33 buildings representing 22 million square feet of office space – 10 per cent of the Toronto region’s office building space.

Over four years, a 10 per cent reduction in these buildings alone would reduce carbon emissions by 12,980 tonnes – equivalent to taking 9,338 cars off the road for a year.*

“Office building landlords and tenants can save money, be more competitive and improve the region’s environment by increasing the energy efficiency of their buildings,” says Linda Mantia, Head, Enterprise Services and Chief Procurement Officer, RBC and voluntary co-chair of Greening Greater Toronto’s Commercial Building Energy Leadership Council. “RBC is pleased to be participating in this unique program, as it will recognize and celebrate landlord and tenant collaboration, action and innovation in delivering economic and environmental benefits for the Toronto region.”

The Race will run through to 2014, which parallels the Ontario government’s timeline for energy conservation targets and supports the delivery timeframe for gas and electricity utilities’ financial incentive programs that promote energy efficiency improvement projects in the office building sector.

“The Race to Reduce is a great way for any office building landlord or tenant to implement environmentally sustainable practices in their day-to-day operations,” says Michael Thornburrow, Senior Vice-President of Corporate Real Estate and Strategic Sourcing at BMO Financial Group and voluntary co-chair of Greening Greater Toronto’s Commercial Building Energy Leadership Council. “The Race will give participants the tools and resources to set goals, improve their energy efficiency and save money.”

The Race to Reduce will recognize team collaboration among building landlords and tenants, encouraging them to reduce energy use together. Annual awards will be presented for outstanding participation and engagement, innovative conservation measures and performance achievements.

For more on the Race to Reduce, or to join the challenge, visit www.racetoreduce.ca.

* (Source: US Environmental Protection Agency)


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Landlords and tenants already participating in the Race to Reduce include:
Bank of Nova Scotia
Bentall Kennedy
Brookfield Properties
Cadillac Fairview
Credit Suisse Real Estate Fund
Manulife Financial
Oxford Properties
Sun Life Assurance
Whiterock REIT

Bank of Nova Scotia
BMO Financial Group
Davis LLP
Desjardins General Insurance
eHealth Ontario
Humber College
Jevco Insurance
Laurentian Bank of Canada
MasterCard Canada
Moneris Solutions
Ontario Hospital Association
Ontario Power Authority
Oxford Properties
Russell Investments
SAP Canada
Smucker Foods of Canada
Symcor Inc.
TD Bank
Whiterock Real Estate

About Greening Greater Toronto:
Greening Greater Toronto (www.greeninggreatertoronto.ca) is an initiative of the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance (www.civicaction.ca), a coalition of thousands of civic leaders acting collectively to tackle tough issues and big opportunities facing the Toronto region. More than 200 partners from corporations, government, and the non-profit sector have joined the Greening Greater Toronto initiative and support the vision of a flourishing region renowned for its environmental action and innovation.

Media Contact:
Rebecca Geller
Communications and Events Officer, CivicAction
Mobile: (416) 992-4966
Work: (416) 309-4480 x509

(Source: US Environmental Protection Agency)