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TD centre reno expected to reap green rewards - Toronto Star


May 05, 1999

A $40 million renovation of the Toronto Dominion Centre will reap big environmental rewards for the city.

Owner Cadillac Fairview is devoting half the sum to environmental improvement s that will reduce the building's greenhouse gas emissions and save enough electricity in a single year to power 6,000 homes.

The improvements include changing 100,000 fixtures to handle energy-efficient lighting. Cadillac Fairview expects to cuts its power bills by $5 million a year on a reduction of 31 million kilowatt hours of electricity.

Improvements in heating, ventilation and air condition­ing will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emissions from the building by 35,000 tones annually.

It would take 10 million trees forest the size of 33 High Parks to eat up that much carbon dioxide, which is a big part of the greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.

"I'm not a scientist, but a businessman and efficiently operated office buildings are more cost-effective. That I understand and it makes sense to me," Cadillac Fairview general manager Michael Miceli said yesterday.

The company will receive a payback on its environmental investments after four years.

The 4.3-million-square-foot centre at King and Bay Sts. is the city's original downtown glass and steel skyscraper.

The TD Centre project will be the biggest environmental retrofit in Toronto, topping the efforts of neighboring First Canadian Place, head­ quarters of the Bank of Montreal, that completed a retrofit that is saving 19.4 million kilowatt hours of electricity and reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 27,000 tones.

The retrofit projects came about through the Better Building Partnership, a combination of city officials and environmental technology businesses promoting energy efficiency .

"Our vision is to retrofit every building across the city from top to bottom - public and private - in the next 15 years and we want to be the first city to do it," said Councilor Jack Layton (Don River).

"We have to retrofit every building. The big ones are important because they are energy pigs," added Lois Corbett, executive director of the Toronto Environmental Alliance.

Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is expected to double within the next half century. A large number of scientists worldwide believe global warming will cause droughts and floods, melt glaciers, increase ocean levels and deplete the Great Lakes.

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