Community Energy Plan

Engagement Opportunity!

To reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption locally, it’s critical that the Community Energy Plan represents the insights and ideas of our community members. Please share your suggestions and complete our survey now.

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What is a Community Energy Plan?

A Community Energy Plan is a comprehensive long term plan to improve energy efficiency, reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas. The CEP results in a comprehensive energy plan that fosters a culture of conservation, considers the impact of future growth and options for local clean energy generation and supports economic development by better meeting local energy needs.

The CEP will allow the Town of Aurora to integrate energy planning into the land use planning process and help develop longer term energy strategies.

In October 2019, the Town Council joined 457 Canadian municipalities and declared a Climate Emergency. Those cities have established a goal of reducing GHG emissions by 80 per cent by 2050, as per the Paris Accord. This target will require significant action from organizations, businesses, residents and the municipality.

The Town is developing a community-wide energy plan that will establish the direction for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and energy use in the community while contributing to the local economy. The initial step in the process looked at how much energy and emissions are used by homes, businesses, industries and transportation in the Town now and in the future. The Town has engaged a stakeholder working group to support the development of the plan, which includes experts in the field, an Aurora Town Councillor and an Aurora resident.

 Why is the Aurora CEP important?

Aurora's population is growing. The forecast population for Aurora in 2031 is approximately 70,200 persons and 34,200 jobs. That is a 17 percent increase over our current population of 60,000 persons. We need to understand how we can accommodate the population and still reduce our carbon footprint. 

The majority of this population growth will be accommodated by higher density developments; we have reached our urban boundary and as such our new development and redevelopment will become increasingly vertical.

Benefits of Energy Planning:

  • Improve energy efficiency
  • Reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions
  • Foster local sustainable energy solutions in the community
  • Address energy limitations where they exist
  • Reduce community vulnerability to energy price increases
  • Increase energy security and resilience
  • Build a local energy efficiency and local energy market sector
  • Retain energy dollars within the community
  • Support local economic development

What will the Aurora CEP achieve?

The vision for Aurora’s Community Energy Plan (CEP):  “Aurora is a leader in energy and emissions reduction, with a focus on improving quality of life in collaboration with residents, organizations and businesses."

The following principles will be taken into account for the Community Energy Plan (CEP) development:

  • That the Community Energy Plan (CEP) promotes economically viable and environmental sustainable solutions.

  • That the process to develop the Community Energy Plan (CEP) allows for meaningful stakeholder and public engagement and input.

  • That the Community Energy Plan (CEP) supports sustainable energy policies and practices in the Town of Aurora's planning for community development, transportation transit services and economic development.

The Community Energy Plan (CEP) will capture Aurora's energy use today and provide a strategic plan on how to move forward towards a sustainable energy system. 

It is anticipated that the CEP will bring financial, social and environmental benefits to the municipality, residents, businesses, developers, and major institutions. 

It is expected that the CEP will address such things as energy efficient buildings and neighbourhoods, energy-efficient transportation systems, efficient energy distribution, clean and renewable energy, and greenhouse gas emissions, in addition to other areas that may be identified through the public consultation process. 

How will the CEP be developed?

The CEP will consist of a Stakeholder Engagement component, followed by a Baseline Energy Study, Energy Map(s) and the development of a Community Energy Plan (CEP). The CEP will identify opportunities for green energy solutions and conservation measures meant to support local economic development and community objectives of energy and conservation, waste and greenhouse gas emission reduction.

Project Scope:

Funding for this project has been retained from:

  • Project funding support provided by the Government of Ontario

  • Federation of Canadian Municipalities' Municipalities for Climate Innovation Program "MCIP"

The Town of Aurora has retained LURA Consulting, ICLEI Canada and Wood to assist with the development of the Community Energy Plan in three stages: 

Stage 1: Stakeholder engagement; Engagement will include Stakeholder Working Group, engagement with municipal staff and utilities, and the public.

Stakeholder Working Group Meeting Timelines

Stage 2: Gathering and analyzing existing baseline data, including energy mapping; allowing for analysis of opportunities for energy reduction/conservation initiatives.

Community Energy & Emissions Baseline will measure:
  • Buildings
  • Transportation
  • Waste

Stage 3: The creation of the Plan and presentation to General Committee and Council for approval; Long-term vision and strategy for energy conservation and green energy solutions.

Community Engagement Initiatives

To complement stakeholder engagement through the working group, two pop-up engagements were held at the Aurora Farmers’ Market in the Summer of 2019.

In order to further engage members of the public in conversations about Aurora’s Community Energy Plan, we have launched online engagement through EngageAurora.ca.

If you would like to sign up for updates, please email Natalie Kehle, Analyst, Energy and Climate Change at nkehle@aurora.ca