Prince Edward County’s Newspaper of Record
July 23, 2024
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News
June 9, 2021

Ontario’s Natural Gas Expansion Program reaches into Cherry Valley

<p>(Enbridge photo)</p>
(Enbridge photo)

JASON PARKS

STAFF WRITER

Approximately 152 homes and businesses in Prince Edward County will be able to connect to natural gas for the first time thanks to Phase 2 of Province’s Natural Gas Expansion Program. 

Bay of Quinte MPP Todd Smith announced Ontario will allocate $5,206,389 to support new connections to the natural gas distribution system and help make life more affordable in southern Prince Edward County.

The investment into connecting customers to the Enbridge network in the Cherry Valley area is part a larger provincially supported program that will allocate more than $234 million to support approximately 8750 connections in 43 rural, northern and Indigenous communities.

Bay of Quinte MPP Todd Smith. (Jason Parks/Gazette Staff)

“Our government is making good on its promise to deliver affordable energy and expand natural gas pipelines to more communities,” said MPP Smith. “Access to natural gas will help more families and businesses near Cherry Valley find energy savings, while promoting economic development and job creation across Bay of Quinte.” 

The announcement was welcomed by County of Prince Edward Mayor Steve Ferguson.

“Residents and businesses have expressed their desire to see natural gas expansion occur in Prince Edward County, and we are pleased to see this move forward,” said Ferguson. “Natural gas is the most common, affordable heating fuel in Ontario. The municipality fully supports the efforts of the Government of Ontario and Enbridge Gas. We look forward to working together to expand natural gas access in our community to attract new opportunities, help create jobs, and lower monthly costs for residents.”

The Ontario government is committed to expanding access to natural gas across the province to help keep the cost of energy low for families, businesses and farmers.

“As part of our government’s plan to make life more affordable, we prioritized broad distribution across Ontario to help as many homes and businesses keep the cost of energy low, support jobs and attract new investment,” said Bill Walker, Ontario’s Associate Minister of Energy. “With Phase 2 of the Natural Gas Expansion program, we’re putting people first and ensuring Ontario remains open for business. This will be a game-changer for these 43 communities.”

By switching to natural gas from costlier fuel sources, the average household could save between $250 to $1,500 annually. Businesses are expected to save up to 30 per cent per year on energy costs.

“We’re thrilled that through Ontario’s Natural Gas Expansion Program, Enbridge Gas will bring much needed and wanted natural gas in the most affordable way to more communities across Ontario, including this one,” said Cynthia Hansen, Executive Vice President & President, Gas Distribution & Storage, Enbridge Inc. “Natural gas is the most economic way to heat buildings and water, and we are excited to work with local officials and the community to move this project forward, so residents can benefit from the cost savings, and local businesses can be more competitive.”

Construction for projects under Phase 2 will begin as soon as this year, with all 28 expansion projects expected to be underway by the end of 2025.

QUICK FACTS

  • Since its launch in 2019, Phase 1 of the Natural Gas Expansion Program has supported projects that are forecasted to connect over 9,000 customers, in 16 communities, to natural gas.
  • Phase 1 and 2 projects are funded through a $1-per-month charge to existing natural gas customers.
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