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New Eco-Roof Program to Boost Rexdale's Local Economy and Create Green Jobs

Feb 08, 2010

(TORONTO - February 8, 2010) Partners in Project Green today announced the launch of Cool Rexdale, a new program that will help to improve the economic, social and environmental vitality of Rexdale, one of Toronto's priority neighborhoods. The eco-roof program encourages local businesses to save energy and green their bottom line by installing green or cool roofs. In turn, the program will create the opportunity for local youth to start a career in the eco-roof industry. 

Cool Rexdale provides full-service support including access to superior roofing systems, financial assistance through the City of Toronto's Eco-Roof Incentive Program and discounted eco-building materials through the Clinton Climate Initiative Purchasing Alliance. Cool Rexdale is a partnership between Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA), Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA), Woodbine Entertainment Group, City of Toronto, Semple Gooder Inc., and Sheet Metal Workers' and Roofers' Local Union 30.   

The program also aims to connect Rexdale youth to green jobs. Together, Semple Gooder, Toronto Employment and Social Services, and other community partners will recruit and train new pre-apprentice roofers, while the Union will provide safety training and help to integrate youth into the roofing industry.  An information session for youth will be held on February 8 at 6 p.m. at Elmbank Community Centre, 10 Rampart Road.

"This partnership is a wonderful example of the difference we can make when we all work together," says Toronto Mayor David Miller. "Rexdale has a high concentration of large flat roofs that tend to absorb sunlight and heat, which is a particular concern as global temperatures rise. By encouraging businesses to go green, we can address this challenge, create green jobs, reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, and beautify our city."

Cool Rexdale builds upon the City of Toronto's Eco-Roof Incentive Program that is designed to promote the use of green and cool roofs on Toronto's commercial, industrial and institutional buildings.  Cool and green roofs can help businesses reduce their heating and cooling costs and extend the life of their roofs. Green roofs, which support rooftop vegetation, also help clean our air, enhance biodiversity and retain storm water and its pollutants.

"We are very excited to be associated with Cool Rexdale", said Jane Holmes, Vice President Corporate Affairs, Woodbine Entertainment Group, a key partner in providing funding to get the program started. "We're proud to be involved with such an elite partnership group, and such a unique program that not only champions environmental sustainability, but does so in a way that helps the youth from this community get valuable hands-on job training in the green economy. To further support our commitment to Cool Rexdale and the emerging eco-roofing industry, I'm pleased to announce that Woodbine will include cool roof specifications in all its future roofing tenders."

The community of Rexdale is a natural partner for the program because it is a priority neighbourhood situated next to the Pearson Eco-Business Zone and is also home to the Rexdale Business Park which features more than 1,400 businesses employing more than 46,000 workers.

"The GTAA is proud to be partnering with the TRCA on this worthwhile initiative" says Toby Lennox, Vice-President of Corporate Affairs and Communications at the GTAA. "The Cool Rexdale program will allow other companies to easily gain the same advantages that the GTAA has in our Fire Emergency Services and Training Institute, which features a green roof. This program is excellent for all involved and we will look to partner with the Rexdale community on future eco-roof opportunities for our buildings."

"The Cool Rexdale Program is exciting because it helps businesses realize the financial benefits of reduced energy costs, while having a positive impact on the environment, and ensuring that local residents share in the benefits of the emerging green economy," said Brian Denney, CAO, Toronto and Region Conservation.

For more information about Cool Rexdale, visit http://www.partnersinprojectgreen.com

 

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About Partners in Project Green

Partners in Project Green, an initiative led by the Greater Toronto Airports Authority and Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, is a growing community of businesses working together to green their bottom line by creating an internationally-recognized eco-business zone around Toronto Pearson. Through new forms of business-to-business collaboration, Partners in Project Green delivers programming that helps businesses reduce energy and resource costs, uncover new business opportunities, and address everyday operational challenges in a green and cost-effective manner.

 

Online resources:

City of Toronto Eco-Roof Incentive Program:  http://toronto.ca/livegreen/ecoroofs

 

     

 

 

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Media contact:

Elizabeth Oakley
Tel: 416-661-6600 ext 5856
media@trca.on.ca

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