Population density581 people per square kilometre
2015 carbon emissions4.1 megatonnes
2016 carbon emissions3.9 megatonnes
2017 carbon emissions3.8 megatonnes
Halton has high natural gas emissions
Halton has the highest per capita emissions in the GTHA when industry sources are excluded. This is despite the fact that Halton’s per capita transportation emissions are at the GTHA median, and the region’s percentage of long car-based commutes is not as high
as in Durham or York.
Natural gas — captured in the buildings sector data — is responsible for a large portion of Halton’s emissions. This natural gas is primarily used for water and space heating, so the warmer winter (with less heating demand) in 2017 is partially responsible for the large overall decrease in emissions that Halton is showing from 2015 to 2017 (see page 11 for more about weather impacts on building emissions).
Halton’s Pathway to Carbon Neutrality
All the municipalities in Halton declared a climate emergency in 2019, suggesting that the region plans to accelerate climate action.
Halton’s emissions from natural gas are high compared to most other parts of the GTHA. Although this is due in part to industrial consumption of natural gas, undertaking energy efficiency retrofits will have to be a critical part of Halton’s plan to reach net-zero emissions. Further, green standards for new buildings should be developed to ensure that the region can continue to grow while still reducing emissions.
SCALABLE SOLUTION FROM HALTON, FOR THE GTHA
Financing Emissions Reductions
Oakville-based company BerQ RNG produces renewable natural gas from Ontario’s food waste. In 2019, TAF invested $1.15 million in a 15-year project with BerQ to install and operate new refining equipment. Not only will this investment reduce carbon emissions by displacing fossil fuels, it will demonstrate the business case for renewable natural gas.
This project has the potential to influence policy and lead to wider GTHA uptake of renewable natural gas technology. Climate solutions that can be applied across the GTHA make for exciting investment opportunities that can accelerate the pace of emissions reductions.
Read more about our impact investing work.