Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting of the Wintergreen Renewable Energy Co-operative will take place at the Kingston Frontenac Public Library on Johnson St., on Thursday, September 29th. The meeting begins officially at 7:00 pm, but feel free to arrive at 6:30 to meet with other members. We urge all members to attend! The meeting will take place in the Delahaye Room on the 3rd floor.

Annual General MeetingGuest speakers Angela Bischoff and Paul McKay will speak on: “Can refurbishing Ontario’s nuclear plants be compatible with a clean, green renewable energy future for Ontario?” Angela led the Ontario Clean Air Alliance’s successful campaign to phase out coal power in Ontario. Paul has worked developing solar projects in Ontario and is author of Electric Empire: The Inside Story of Ontario Hydro

Leaps and Steps: Towards 100% Renewable Energy

You are invited to the 6th Annual Community Energy Retreat!

Friday, May 27, 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 8.59.55 AMOn May 27th the Wintergreen Renewable Energy Co-operative will be holding the  Annual Community Energy Retreat at Wintergreen Studios, along with long-term partners, Sustainable Eastern Ontario and the Community Energy Network of Eastern Ontario.

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 8.39.58 AMEvent Summary:

This year’s retreat will open with a presentation featuring uplifting examples of how practices of all kinds, all around the world, are shifting as we move towards a sustainable future. Some examples will be large scale (leaps), and others smaller scale (steps), recognizing that change of all kinds is what is needed to reach the tipping point for renewable energy to become the norm.

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 9.39.29 AMThe opening presentation will be followed by introductions to the participants, with an invitation to share a success story—a leap or a step—that brings us closer to 100% renewable energy or related efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change. Before breaking for lunch, there will be a presentation on what it takes to make a successful transition to 100% RE.

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 8.44.03 AMAfter lunch, we will examine some of the popular campaigns that focus on making the broad changes that we so urgently need, such as the Leap Manifesto and, identifying common threads. Then, we will break into groups to identify concrete ways to bring community plans to fruition, featuring initiatives in both Kingston and Ottawa. The Kingston discussions will focus on Kingston’s Community Energy Plan and Climate Action Plan, while the Ottawa conversations will zone in on 100% Renewable Ottawa.

We intend to finish the day both inspired and filled with actions that we are ready to take as individuals and collectives.

As in previous years, the event will include a mixture of presentations, roundtable discussions and themed group discussions, along with delicious food featuring local produce. There will be opportunities to network with like-minded friends and colleagues throughout the day.

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 8.42.10 AMThis day-long event is open to the public and to Wintergreen Co-op members. Arrival for tea and coffee at 9:00; the event itself will run from 9:30 – 4:00. The fee includes workshop materials, an optional tour of Wintergreen’s facilities, as well as snacks, tea, coffee, and lunch. The subsidized fee is $20, thanks to the contributing partners.


Setting the Climate Change Action Bar

A coalition of, what was just last week, 55 Canadian environmental and social justice groups, has now grown to 75 – with Wintergreen Co-op as one of the signatories. The coalition  is demanding that federal, provincial and territorial leaders embrace the policy changes needed for Canada to meet its Paris climate change commitments.

climate changeIn a letter sent to Prime Minister Trudeau and all provincial and territorial leaders, the groups spelled out expectations to be taken into account at the intergovernmental meetings on climate policy, which will likely be held on March 3.

Wintergreen Renewable Energy Co-op members believe that the six suggestions contained in the letter constitute a good framework for the ongoing federal-provincial discussions leading to a national Climate Action plan. We are pleased to have signed on to this letter. Read the full article here.

The six suggestions are:

1. A new science-based emission reduction target consistent with a 1.5 degree temperature rise. Canada needs a new science-based emission reduction target consistent with keeping the rise in global temperatures under 1.5 degrees Celsius. Cutting our emissions as much as possible as soon as possible will set us on a path to achieving this goal, whereas delaying action may preclude any possibility of staying under a 1.5 degree rise.

2. A clear and measurable plan for a just transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050. Canada needs to transition to 100% low-carbon electricity by 2035 and strive for 100% reliance on renewable sources for all forms of energy by 2050. Investing in renewable energy creates up to eight times as many jobs as investing in oil and gas extraction.

3. An end to subsidies for fossil fuel industries and investments in a green economy. The 2016 federal budget is an opportunity to act on Canada’s 2009 promise to eliminate subsidies to fossil fuel industries and announce significant initiatives to support public transit, green infrastructure and clean technologies. Annual Canadian subsidies to fossil fuel industries averaged $2.9 billion over 2013 and 2014, with $1.7 billion of this from the federal government.

4. A carbon fee set at $30 per tonne and a commitment to increase it over time. The government must establish, in consultation with the provinces and territories, a national standard for pricing carbon emissions through a carbon fee set initially at $30 per tonne of greenhouse gases and increasing in steps to a level consistent with limiting temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

5. A far-reaching, permanent regulatory approval process for assessing energy projects. A new, permanent regulatory approval process for assessing energy projects must replace the flawed National Energy Board process. It must respect Indigenous peoples’ rights to free, prior and informed consent as required by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which the government of Canada has promised to uphold, and it must account for the downstream carbon emissions of the projects.

6. A $4 billion annual contribution to climate adaptation and mitigation measures in the Global South. Based on precedents where Canada has contributed 3% to 4% of multilateral funds, Canada’s fair share of the $100 billion (U.S.) promised in the Paris decision document requires a contribution of $4 billion a year by 2020.



And now the real work begins…

Excited as we are about the Paris Agreement – imagine – 195 countries coming to an accord! – the work is only beginning.

work climate end of fossil fuelsAs noted by Eric Flanagan in a recent blog:

For the first time, all signatory nations have committed to a legally-binding agreement that recognizes the urgent threat of climate change. The agreement aims to limit global temperature increase to “well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels” and encourages all countries to “pursue efforts to limit temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius”.

These temperature goals demonstrate a near-global consensus on the urgent need to transition to a low-carbon economy.

Read the full post here. It’s thorough, hopeful, and realistic.

Change in the Canadian Climate

Canadian climateThere is change in the air. With the new cabinet announced this week, Trudeau is sending a strong signal that climate protection is high on his agenda. Quoting an article from the National Post,

“As signals go, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has put a big green light on his Liberal government’s promised climate change agenda.

Catherine McKenna, an international lawyer with an eye-popping resume, was named the new minister of “environment and climate change” Wednesday at Rideau Hall as Trudeau installed his new Liberal cabinet.

But the signs of climate policy green shoots go well beyond a high-profile new MP and the semantics of a ministerial name change.

Former Liberal environment minister and party leadership climate advocate Stephane Dion is Canada’s new foreign affairs minister — a powerful post that will give him oversight on ensuring climate policy is integral to Canada’s foreign policy.

Dion was also named chairman of a new cabinet committee on “environment, climate change and energy.”

Read the full article here.

There have been many terrific posts about the new cabinet and the new government. Here’s another of our favourites:Canadian climateBetter yet, the Canadian public seems to be holding Trudeau accountable for his 184 election promises. The Trudeau Metre website ( shows us that two of his promises have already been fulfilled, the first of which was to name a cabinet with gender parity. Not bad for the first three days in office!Canadian climateSo now, we keep up the pressure, in the most forward-looking and positive ways possible. Join us for the march on Parliament Hill on November 29, organized by 100% possible. Because. It. Is. 100%. Possible. Now it’s up to us to make it so.

We’ll be talking more about how we can support this shift in the Canadian climate at our AGM on December 3. Mark the date!

This Changes Everything!

Screen Shot 2015-10-30 at 12.43.37 PMWhile turfing out the Harper Conservatives doesn’t change everything, it sure does change a lot. People who want to avert climate disaster and develop a clean energy economy now have a wonderful opportunity to persuade the brand new Trudeau government to take serious national action to avert a climate catastrophe and promote and facilitate democratic, community-based renewable energy development on a massive scale across Canada.

Screen Shot 2015-10-30 at 1.05.37 PMThe Screening Room in Kingston will be showing Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis’ wonderful new film, This Changes Everything, on Wed Nov 11 and Thurs Nov 12. Both showings will be 7 pm. The management at the Screening room has agreed to allow Wintergreen and friends to have 30 minutes, after the showing and before the next scheduled film, for a discussion with the audience about a local campaign to support the Leap Manifesto and the 100% Possible Climate March in Ottawa on Nov 29. Learn more about the march by clicking here.

Here is a link to Democracy Now’s interview with Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis. It features a trailer for the movie as well as a good discussion.

Screen Shot 2015-10-30 at 12.48.15 PMWintergreen Co-op has endorsed the Leap Manifesto and will discuss a proposed campaign to build support locally for the Leap Manifesto at our upcoming AGM at the Central Branch of the KFPL in the Delahaye Room at 7pm on Dec 3. Non–members welcome.

(Don’t forget to sign the Manifesto!)

Screen Shot 2015-10-30 at 12.47.56 PMWe have a lot of ideas to build a campaign to support the Leap Manifesto’s call for a transformation of our energy system including a reading club to read Naomi Klein’s book, This Changes Everything. We’re looking for lots more ideas and more community partners to build this campaign.

Please come out to an event or get in touch with us if you’d like to become more involved. I’d love to hear from you.

David Hahn, President (613-273-5545)

Community Energy Projects

A few exciting updates!

FIT 3 Projects

It looks like the 500 kw project we’re working on with SolarShare will be built early this winter and the second one on Abbey Dawn will likely be built next year.

FIT 4 Applications

The application for the Middle Road 500 kW ground mount has ben submitted and now we’re waitng for the IESO to announce the projects that will be offered contracts. Fingers crossed!

Oxford Community Energy Co-op

a-path-to-sustainable-energy-by-2030_1This is the first community-owned wind project in Ontario ( fter the Windshare turbine at Exhibition Place in Toronto many years ago.)

Many of our members invested in Oxford Co-op’s 18 MW wind project in Oxford County near Woodstock. The appeal of the environmental approval by the anti-wind group has been rejected and construction is now beginning.

Doing Well While Doing Good: Raising Community Capital

community capital
Janice of OREC giving a presentation at a prior retreat.

On June 19th the Wintergreen Renewable Energy Co-operative will be holding the 5th Annual Community Energy Retreat at Wintergreen Studios, along with long-term partners, Sustainable Eastern Ontario and the Community Energy Network of Eastern Ontario.

Event Summary:

This year’s retreat will feature case studies and examples of how community funds were leveraged for a variety of unique projects. As in previous years, the event will include a mixture of presentations, roundtable discussions and themed group discussions, and delicious food featuring local produce. There will be opportunities to network with like-minded colleagues throughout the day.

This day-long event is open to the public and to Wintergreen Co-op members. It will run from 9:30 – 4:00, and the fee includes workshop materials, a sustainability tour of Wintergreen’s facilities, snacks, tea, coffee, and lunch. The subsidized fee is $20, thanks to the contributing partners.


Annual AGM … and transparent solar cells!

MScreen Shot 2015-03-26 at 6.47.10 AMuch has been happening… so much, in fact, that we haven’t posted on the website for some time! (for almost daily postings, check our Facebook page). We held our Annual General Meeting on January 30, and learned all about “Zoo Poo” from Daniel Bida, Executive Director of ZooShare.  ZooShare is a sister co-op, engaged in building a very exciting biogas project at the Toronto Zoo using “Zoo Poo” to generate clean energy for Ontario. Zoo poo… who knew?

transparent solarPretty amazing technology is also around the corner with fully transparent solar cells – click here to read the full article. Or check FB!

Screen Shot 2015-03-26 at 6.51.54 AMAnd… mark the date… we’ll be holding the 5th Annual Green Energy Workshop at Wintergreen Studios on Friday, June 19. Thanks again to our long-time partner, Sustainable Eastern Ontario, for making it possible to host this event at Wintergreen.