Retrofits: Creating Jobs, Cutting Emissions and Climate Proofing Housing in Toronto

Decent work, a safe climate and quality housing are three things that all Torontonians should have. Building retrofits that put community needs at the centre can reduce the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in our city while creating local green jobs and improving housing conditions for residents.

That’s why the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA) has been working with skilled trades unions, tenant organizers, social enterprises, and a wide coalition of advocates, organizers and researchers to map out opportunities for retrofits that will create the kind of "climate-proof" city we need. Watch the video to hear their stories.

Tackling our biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions

Buildings account for almost half of all greenhouse gas emissions in Toronto. Toronto’s TransformTO climate action plan has a goal to retrofit 100% of existing buildings by 2050. To reach the City of Toronto's target of reducing emissions 65% by 2030, retrofits need to be an accelerated priority area. 

Creating good, green, local jobs

To do retrofits on the scale that is necessary, Toronto will need a highly-skilled green workforce. If done right, this will create and support lots of local jobs, pathways to the trades, and decent work for communities facing employment barriers.

Improving housing

Toronto’s rental housing stock is aging and in need of repair. More than 500,000 Toronto residents live in high-rise apartments 35 years or older. They were purpose-built to be ‘affordable’ rental housing but they were not built to be ‘climate proof’. From retrofitting highrise buildings, to hospitals and schools, to individual homes, retrofits can reduce building emissions, protect against extreme weather, and lead to cost savings over the long term.


Join the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA) and help build a greener city for all.


Thank you to the following organizations: