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5 Things Friday

What your government did for you this week

Investing in Medical Research

        Ontario is investing in medical research and open science to help speed up the development of new treatments for diseases and conditions. This week, Reza Moridi, Minister of Research, Innovation and Science, was joined by Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, to announce support for the Structural Genomics Consortium (SGC) at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) Research Institute of Ottawa. SGC is a public-private partnership based on the principle of open science - making research data open and accessible to researchers everywhere, to speed up the discovery of new medicines. The SGC also helps Ontario attract pharmaceutical investment, build a stronger commercialization pipeline for new treatments and create and retain high quality jobs.

 

Investing in GO Transit

        This week we announced that the province has commenced the GO Rail Network Electrification Transit Project Assessment Process. The process builds on public consultations held last year and will assess the environmental impacts of converting core segments of the GO rail network, including the UP Express, from diesel to electric. In tandem with the assessment process, Ontario is also undertaking a feasibility study on the use of hydrogen fuel cells as an alternative technology for a symposium to explore the potential application of hydrogen fuel cell technology to  electrify the GO rail network. Ontario is undertaking a $21.3 billion transformation of the GO network. The investment will deliver faster and more frequent service, create thousands of jobs and improve people’s quality of live. Ontario is on track to electrify and expand the rail network, and bring more two-way, all-day services to our commuters and families by 2025.

 

Canadian Men’s Health Week

        Ontario is partnering with the Canadian Men’s Health Foundation (CMHF), providing funding to        encourage men to make small changes in their lives that can make a big difference to their health. CMHF is promoting small steps such as sleeping seven to eight hours per night, consuming no more than 15 alcoholic drinks per week, eating 10 servings of fruit and vegetables per day, and exercising for 150 minutes every week. Ontario is providing $5 million over five years to support CMHF’s work to increase men’s health literacy, improve research and data collection, reach men in ethnic communities who are increased risk, and engage with health care professionals and chronic diseases organizations to help men make better health decisions. 

 

Climate Change Action Plan

        As part of its Climate Change Action Plan, the province is allocating $200 million worth of cap and trade proceeds to launch the Greenhous Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) for schools across the province to install energy-efficient building elements such as new windows, lights and furnaces, which will help improve student health and fight climate change. Ontario will spend $1.4 billion on school renewals and repairs this year, which includes the $200 million GGRF. The GFRG will support retrofit projects that reduce energy use in schools. 

 

Greenhouse Gas Emission Allowances

        This week, Ontario announced the results of the province’s auction of greenhouse gas emission allowances. A total of 25,296,367 current (2017) allowances were sold with a settlement price of $18.72 and a total of 1,674,000 future (2020) greenhouse gas emission allowances were sold at a settlement price of $18.30. The auction generated an estimated $504,182,190 in proceeds, which by law will be invested in programs that will reduce greenhouse gas pollution and help families and businesses reduce their own emissions through the Climate Change Action Plan.

 

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