Government introduces legislation to create PACE program

By Charles Lefebvre
April 12, 2018 - 5:38pm

EDMONTON, AB — The provincial government has tabled a new bill that would make it easier for homeowners to finance energy efficient upgrades.

An Act to Enable Clean energy Improvements was introduced Thursday in the legislature by Shaye Anderson, Minister of Municipal Affairs.

If passed, it would allow municipalities the option of establishing a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, which would allow home and business owners to make their spaces more energy-efficient, without putting any money down.

The financing for the upgrades, such as solar panels, would be repaid through the building owner’s property taxes.

“We know that Albertans care about taking action on climate change, and PACE will make it more affordable for them to do just that,” said Anderson in a news release. “This is a win for our municipalities that will be able to implement these programs, a win for home and business owners, and a win for our economy.”

PACE programs were first implemented in California in 2008, and have spread across the United States. Ontario, Nova Scotia and Quebec have also adopted PACE legislation. Calgary and Edmonton are among the municipalities who have been advocating for the program.

Municipalities would have the choice as to whether to offer a clean energy improvement program, and they’d need to pass a PACE bylaw before offering the program.

If passed, the legislation would come into effect in 2019.

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