Brampton, June 20, 2007 - In support of the Government of Ontario's climate change strategy, Hydro One Networks announced today details of its PowerHouse Loan Pilot Program - part of the Ontario government's $150 million Home Retrofit Initiative. Through the pilot, Hydro One will offer zero-interest loans for qualifying customers installing alternative and renewable energy technologies in their homes.
The PowerHouse Loan Program will provide loans for home retrofits that include the installation of solar, geothermal, photovoltaic and wind technologies that generate renewable electricity. Obtaining a PowerHouse Loan will result in substantial savings for qualifying customers. For example, a customer approved for a four-year loan of $35,000 at 9% interest stands to save an estimated $6,500 over the life of the loan. The province is providing $1.1 million to fund the program.
Hydro One will announce the cooperating financial institution for the pilot this summer. With a financial institution in place, 175,000 Hydro One Networks customers in Brampton, Caledon and parts of York Region will become eligible to apply for the PowerHouse loan. Capital investments of $2,000 or more will be eligible for zero-percent financing.
In addition to avoiding the carrying costs of a loan, customers will contribute to the province's effort to reduce green house gases and enjoy reduced monthly electricity bills by using power provided by renewable technology.
A similar pilot project is being launched today by Enersource of Mississauga.
"Today's announcement is another major step forward that will help qualifying customers save energy, save money and reduce green house gases," said Energy Minister Dwight Duncan. "This innovative pilot will make it even easier for Ontario homeowners to install renewable energy technologies in their home that will help make Ontario cleaner and greener."
"Through Hydro One's PowerHouse Loan Program, we can help our customers save in two important ways. They will save the interest costs on the life of the loan and reduce their monthly bill by powering part of their home's energy needs with zero-emission technology," said Laura Formusa, President and CEO (Acting), Hydro One Networks.
The pilot will run until March 31, 2009. Depending upon results of the pilot, the PowerHouse Loan Program may be extended to all Hydro One Networks residential customers.
Solar panels generate electricity through converting light into electricity. This type of electricity costs between $10,000 and $15,000 per kilowatt installed. An energy efficient house would require approx 3 kW of solar PV to meet all of its electricity needs
Residential Solar Water Heating
The energy from the sun is collected by solar panels and transferred by circulating fluids to a storage tank. These heaters are typically used with a back-up fuel source as they are typically designed to provide between 35 and 75% of the residential hot water needs.
A heat pump is used to move warm air out of a building and into the ground in the summer to cool it and used to extract heat from the earth in winter to provide heating.
Wind turbines use the wind's lift forces to rotate aerodynamic blades that turn a rotor which creates electricity.
Hydro One delivers electricity safely, reliably and responsibly to homes and businesses across the province of Ontario and owns and operates Ontario's 29,000 kilometre high-voltage transmission network that delivers electricity to large industrial customers and municipal utilities, and a 122,000 kilometre low-voltage distribution system that serves about 1.3 million end-use customers and smaller municipal utilities in the province. Hydro One is wholly owned by the Province of Ontario.
For more information, visit www.hydroone.com