Office of Energy Initiatives

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Corporate Energy Policy

The Corporate Energy Policy, passed by Council in November 2007, is specifically designed to:

  • facilitate the achievement of City-wide energy reduction targets,
  • provide for ongoing energy monitoring and targeting of utility usage,
  • define policies regarding capital investment related to energy.

Specifically, the Energy Policy calls for targeted energy reductions in energy intensity of City-owned facilities and operations of 20% by 2020. These targets equate to about a 1.5% reduction in energy per year. The report recommends that 2005 be used as the base year for measuring results. In conjunction with related policies, such as Vision 2020, the City’s Energy Policy will also make a significant contribution to achieving the goal of 20% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2020. 


The City achieved its 20% energy intensity reduction by 2013 – seven years ahead of schedule. The original Corporate Energy Policy (2007) has been updated with proposed new targets for energy intensity in City-owned facilities and fuel efficiency in City fleet vehicles as follows:

  • Energy intensity in corporate facilities – 60% by 2050 and the interim target of 45% by 2030;
  • Fuel efficiency in City’s fleet vehicles - 20% improvement by 2030;
  • Greenhouse Gas emissions – 80% reduction by 2050 and the interim target of 50% by 2030 (previously approved by Council);
  • Hamilton Water to track energy intensity.

Read the complete full Corporate Energy Policy (PDF, 166 KB)

Corporate Energy Annual Reports

The City of Hamilton continues to demonstrate municipal leadership in energy conservation and renewable energy. The City’s energy program plays an important role in mitigating against rising energy costs by reducing energy consumption and generating renewable energy that also assists in reducing the City’s overall environmental footprint.

Utility Costs Breakdown

2015 Utility Cost Breakdown

2015 Annual Report


The 2015 Annual Energy Report details the 2015 energy usage, costs, energy performance, procurement efforts, conservation, savings and avoided costs, as well as cumulative results dating back to 2006. The total cumulative avoided costs, energy efficiency savings and incentives are $46.2 million dollars since 2006. $7.4 million was achieved for the calendar year 2015.

The following are 2015 highlights for City owned sites:
Total utilities costs of $48.1M
Energy conservation savings of $2.4M
Energy Intensity decreased 19% (energy consumption per square foot) vs. base year (2005)
Greenhouse gas emissions reduction of 22% vs. base year (2005)

Energy Savings and Avoided Costs

The total savings and avoided costs for 2015 amounted to $7.4 Million in three categories:

Utility Rates & Cost Avoidance
Savings under this category are classified as the avoidance of costs that would have been incurred had no action been initiated.Such actions include procurement plans and strategies, including commodity hedging, and optimizing utility rates. The 2015 savings in this category totalled $4.3 Million.

Cost Recovery
Savings under this category are classified as costs recovered due to the City’s continuous efforts to monitor and analyze all utility accounts. This is the recovery of costs stemming from adjustments made to billing errors, billing anomalies or rate corrections. The 2015 savings in this category totalled $222,000.

Energy Conservation & Incentives
This category is classified by the savings achieved from the implementation of energy efficient measures and equipment that leads to lower energy consumption and any financial incentives associated with the projects. In addition to capturing the energy cost and consumption savings, many of the City’s capital projects are eligible for a variety of financial incentives from our utility providers (Alectra Utilities (formerly Horizon Utilities), Hydro One and Union Gas). The 2015 savings in this category totalled $2.9 Million.

Read the full 2015 Annual Energy Report (PDF, 11.4 MB)


In 2014, the City of Hamilton spent $48.8 million for electricity, natural gas, water and fuel. This reflects an overall year over year cost increase of 7%. Included in these costs are Hamilton Water, Operations, Street and Traffic Lighting, Fleet, Transit and all City-owned facilities and properties.

The winter of 2014 was 22% colder than 2013 (measured by heating degree days) along with severe winter weather conditions attributed to an increase in overall energy consumption of 8% for electricity and natural gas and an increased fuel consumption of 4% .

In 2014, the City of Hamilton introduced a revised Corporate Energy Policy that is being used as the frame work for energy management plans in the effort to control or mitigate energy costs, reduce overall energy intensity and reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. These energy management plans will also work to reduce overall energy consumption and mitigate energy costs in all City-owned sites and Hamilton Water.

The policy provides guidelines for base building minimum standards that recommend best practice for building temperatures and sustainable building design. The policy also provides guidelines for new construction, major renovations and other activities that will be key contributors to meeting the City’s new targets.

The following highlights the results for City owned sites for 2014 vs. 2005 (base year).

  • 2014 electricity and natural gas consumption is 5% lower than base year;
  • 2014 electricity and natural gas costs are 12% higher than base year;
  • Energy Intensity decreased 16% (energy consumption per square foot) vs. base year.

Energy Savings and Avoided Costs

Continued efforts to reduce energy consumed by the various City departments and to mitigate and control their associated costs have demonstrated success in the following major categories of energy management activities.

Utility Rates & Cost Avoidance
With a strategic plan for mitigating the financial risk associated with the commodity portion of energy costs in current and future energy markets, the City of Hamilton has benefited from costs that are lower than other municipalities. This procurement strategy assists in the creation and control of various energy budgets and yields and avoidance of some costs that would have been incurred if no action was initiated. The 2014 savings for this category is $2,705,777.

Cost Recovery
The City’s continuous efforts to monitor and analyze the more than 2000 City of Hamilton utility accounts has led to recovery of costs stemming from corrections or adjustments made to billing errors, billing anomalies and rate correction analysis. In 2014,this has resulted in $302,615 of cost recovery for the City.

Energy Conservation & Incentives
Implementing energy efficient measures or equipment leads to lower energy consumption which in turn results in energy costs being lower than what they would be by not implementing. Many of these projects that involve capital spending are also eligible for financial incentives from various energy programs delivered by our utility providers Hydro One, Alectra Utilities (formerly Horizon Utilities) and Union Gas. 2014’s completed projects captured $2,883,862 in savings.

  • The savings represent the benefit of energy efficient upgrades compared to the City not taking any action.
  • The total energy savings and avoided costs for 2014 are $5,892,255.
  • The cumulative total for energy savings and avoided costs from 2005 to the end of 2014 amounts to $38.7 million dollars.

Read the full 2014 Annual Energy Report (PDF, 22.4 MB)

Other documents & reports