Grants of up to $5,000 announced for heat pump installation

Heat pump program announced

RAY BURNS THE NEWS ray.burns@saltwire.com @ngnews

2022-11-24T08:00:00.0000000Z

2022-11-24T08:00:00.0000000Z

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https://saltwire.pressreader.com/article/281500755256819

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STELLARTON – On a day when the first real blanket of snow covered Pictou County, people were thinking warm thoughts at Trinity Energy on MacGregor Ave. An announcement by Central Nova MP Sean Fraser was spurring those thoughts. Fraser, speaking on behalf of cabinet colleague Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources, pledged $250 million from the federal government for Canadian homeowners who wish to switch their houses over from oil furnaces to heat pumps. “Overall, this program is going to help tens of thousands of families in Canada. Most of whom, in Atlantic Canada, are still burning oil to heat their homes,” Fraser said. “It goes to show that we can save people money while doing the right thing for the environment.” The Oil to Heat Pump Affordability (OHPA) Grant will see eligible households receive grants of up to $5,000. The money is earmarked for the purchase and installation of eligible heat pumps, electrical upgrades required for the installation, and the safe removal of the home’s oil tank. There is no in-home assessment required to be eligible. The money will be provided upfront once it’s approved. The grants can also be combined with other provincial, federal and territorial energy programs. This new funding stream is intended to bolster the federal government’s Canada Greener Homes Initiative. “These programs are helping homeowners save money, and these are in addition to the new grant of up to $5,000,” Fraser said. This announcement will help families save money to spend on other things, Fraser said. Kayla Muir’s family is one of them. Muir who along with her partner is raising two small boys, Max and Luke. They heat their home with oil and elevated prices took a toll on their budget last year. “One of my family’s biggest costs is our oil to heat our home during the winter months. It is sadly something that makes us forgo other necessities,” she said. “The tough reality is that these days, like many families, the money we spend on heating our home means less bread and milk in our kitchen.” Muir said she knows many families are struggling to make ends meet and this announcement provides some hope. “There’s no shame in what we are all going through right now and I’m just really happy that someone took the time to listen,” she said. In his remarks, Fraser also said the new program will also help protect the environment and employ more people. “This is also helping create jobs across the country,” he noted. In a moment of synchronicity, Trinity Energy Group CEO Dwaine MacDonald said his company had in fact hired its 100th employee on that very day. Trinity hosted the event and MacDonald called it an important day for the industry and the future of fighting climate change. “This funding will provide so many homeowners the opportunity that they may not otherwise have been able to in making a switch from home heating oil to heat pumps,” he said. Canadians can apply online in the new year and will be assessed on three requirements to see if they meet eligibility requirements. The household must have an after-tax income at or below the median household aftertax income. The home must be oil heated as of January 2023 and the applicant must be the primary resident and owner of the home. Stephen MacDonald, president and CEO of Efficiency One, acted as emcee for the announcement. He said saving energy is crucial now more than ever. “Never have I witnessed a more critical time for energy efficiency. We’re all seeing the impacts of climate change... mitigating climate change doesn’t have to mean more costs and that’s where energy efficiency comes in.”

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