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Ontario Geothermal Advancement Highlighted at the OGA Annual Conference

Thursday, March 2nd 2017 9:12:23am

Ontario Geothermal Advancement Highlighted at the OGA Annual Conference

On February 21-22, the Ontario Geothermal Association (OGA) hosted their 7th annual OGA Conference - Spotlighting Geothermal Energy - which welcomed local and international leaders in the geothermal industry.

The first day of the conference began with a welcome address from Jim Bolger, OGA President, followed by a Keynote Presentation made by Illinois-based Steve Smith, CEO of Enertech Global. Mr. Smith provided a detailed comparison of the cost of installation of a geothermal heating and cooling systems, and outlined what is needed to consider geothermal for residential and commercial installations.


Hon. Minister Glen Murray

Ontario’s Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Glen Murray, kicked off the second day by addressing Ontario’s Climate Change Action Plan and the Role of Geothermal: What We’ve Done and Where We’re Going. Minister Murray re-confirmed the provincial government’s commitment to work with the geothermal heating and cooling industry on carbon-reduction solutions in the future. He praised the organization for their contribution to policy development so far.

A notable international presence was Martin Forsén, Manager, International Affairs, NIBE, based in Sweden. He referenced the Swedish experience of the past 30 years to demonstrate that the goals set out by the Ontario government to limit GHG emissions from homes and buildings is, in fact, achievable. The success of reducing emissions to near-zero while also reducing energy costs for end users in Sweden has been due in large part to the wide-scale deployment of heat pump technology, especially ground source heat pumps.  Over the past two years, NIBE has purchased several large geothermal heat pump manufacturers in North America, signalling that they see similar growth opportunities for the technology in this market.

The “buzz” of the Conference was the presentation from Enbridge Gas Distribution VP of Market Development and Public Government Affairs, Malini Giridhar, who outlined Enbridge’s plans to aggressively increase their presence in the Ontario geothermal marketplace, focusing on the new home construction market initially.


Jim Bolger, President OGA, Hon. Minister Glen Murray, Stan Reitsma, Vice President OGA

The two-day conference had a popular trade show component and provided an opportunity for guests to network. The conference also explored the opportunities for geothermal in a variety of markets and applications, addressed what needs to be done to realise these opportunities, and what industry participants can do to help make the Ontario Geothermal industry reach its full potential.

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For conference photos, interviews, and related inquiries please contact Don Huff, ECO Strategy, huffd@ecostrategy.ca, 416-972-7401 or (C) 416-805-7720.

About OGA: The Ontario Geothermal Association (OGA) is a not-for-profit organization representing geothermal energy system designers, drillers, installers, equipment manufacturers and distributors to advance Ontario’s geothermal heating and cooling industry.  The OGA strives to be a bridge between consumers, government and industry professionals while acting as a voice to increase awareness for the importance of working towards the use of a greener, cleaner and self-sustainable energy source.

The OGA was established in June of 2009 and on April 16, 2013 they were proud to announce that OGA and HRAI entered into a formal agreement making OGA an affiliated association of HRAI.

HRAI is a national association that represents more than 1,300 heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) manufacturers, wholesalers and contractors, and provides Canadians with the tools and information necessary to ensure their total indoor environment comfort.

HRAI offers leadership and training programs for the advancement of its members’ business and technical excellence, promotes a code of ethics for consumer protection and safety, and provides consumers with useful information and a database of members in good standing to support an informed buying process. Through its membership requirements and consumer feedback processes, HRAI is committed to a safe, responsible and fair industry that is environmentally-responsible and sustainable.