Carbon Tax Brings Ontario Energy Rebates for Small Businesses

Published on May 31, 2019

Federal Carbon Tax Brings New Rebates for Small Businesses

Catherine McKenna, Canada’s Environment Minister, recently announced two new rebate programs that small business owners can use to reduce their energy consumption.

The programs have a collective budget of $1.4 billion, and will be put to use in the four provinces that have a federal carbon tax: Ontario, New Brunswick, Alberta, and Saskatchewan.

While the full plans have not yet been released, the expectation is that the first new rebate will total $44 million for 2019, with a maximum rebate of $20,000 for a single business.

This rebate program is intended to help small business owners upgrade and/or retrofit their appliances for energy efficiency by providing a financial incentive.

The second rebate program will be aimed towards helping small business owners reduce their energy use, and is expected to total $106 million in 2019, with a $1 million maximum for a single project.

McKenna admits that the programs took a bit of time to ensure that every detail was correct, as she had wanted rebate programs that were straightforward and made fast returns for small business owners.

However, Dan Kelly, the president for the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (CFIB), has called the new programs underwhelming, and said that it is not likely that they will be able to cover the costs of the new carbon tax.

More details of the two new rebate programs are expected to be announced after Parliament passes the budget implementation bill put forward by the federal government.

Ontario Energy Rebates and the Home Efficiency Rebate Program

Currently, there are a number of different Ontario energy rebates available for Ontario homeowners who improve the energy efficiency of their home. Through the Home Efficiency Rebate (HER) program, homeowners have up to $5000 of rebates available, allowing them to see a faster return on their investment.

The first step of the HER application process is to have a certified service organization (such as BSG) conduct an energy audit of your home. An energy audit not only helps you with the qualification process, but it also provides you with a complete look at your home’s energy performance, and it highlights the areas of your home that could be the most cost-effectively improved.

More often than not, the most effective way for a home to reduce its energy usage and improve the quality of its living space is to upgrade or add insulation to the attic. With an Ontario energy rebate from the HER opportunity for example, two seperate $500 rebates are available for attic insulation upgrades, making it easier for you to start saving money through your energy bill savings.   

Also, as your home becomes more energy efficient, you will notice that it also becomes more comfortable, has better interior air quality, and that it has a higher market value when it comes time to sell.

If you have any questions about the Ontario energy efficiency rebate programs offered in Ontario, or if you would like to schedule a time for a home energy audit of your very own, call us toll free at 1-866-333-3920, or leave us a message on our website and one of our customer care representatives will be happy to assist you.

The Canada Greener Homes Grant offers home efficiency renovation grants up to $5,000.

Homeowners Canada-wide are eligible for the Canada Greener Homes Grant, announced on May 27, 2021. This new incentive offers up to $5,000 in grants for home efficiency retrofit renovations, plus a $600 reimbursement for pre- and post-work EnerGuide evaluations. Eligible retrofit scopes include home insulation, heating, doors, windows, photovoltaic solar panels, resiliency measures, and thermostats.

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