Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited

Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited
The Home Depot Canada

The Home Depot Canada
Clean Air Foundation

Clean Air Foundation

June 06, 2006 16:12 ET

Turn Your Air Conditioner Into Cash With Keep Cool-The Home Depot, Toronto Hydro & Clean Air Foundation Launch Air Conditioner Retirement Program

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - June 6, 2006) - The Home Depot®Canada, Toronto Hydro and the Clean Air Foundation have launched the second annual Keep Cool air conditioner retirement program. On weekends between June 10th and 25th, 2006, Torontonians can retire their old room air conditioners at any Toronto-based The Home Depot location and receive a $25 gift card to use on anything in the store courtesy of Toronto Hydro. In addition, those with central air conditioning who head to The Home Depot during Keep Cool can sign up for Toronto Hydro's peakSAVER Air Conditioning (AC), which automatically 'cycles down' homeowners' central air-conditioners, water heaters and pool pumps when the electricity system is stretched. In return, those who participate will receive a $25 gift card when the switch is installed.

"There are over one million homes in Ontario that have window or room air conditioners," said Ersilia Serafini, executive director of the Clean Air Foundation. "This represents a significant impact on electricity demand as older window air conditioners use 30-70% more energy than newer, efficient models."

Keep Cool, run by the Clean Air Foundation, is the only air conditioner retirement program of its kind. Currently, room or window air conditioners (RACs), particularly older models, contribute to smog and climate change while heavy air conditioner use is largely responsible for stress to the hometown electricity grid during the hot summer months. More information on the program and participating The Home Depot locations can be found at

"Keep Cool and peakSAVER AC give the citizens of Toronto more opportunities to conserve energy at peak usage times," said Annette Verschuren, president of The Home Depot Canada. "We're committed to helping improve the environment by providing consumers with energy-efficient product choices and action-oriented incentives that make a positive difference."

Through the program - running in select cities across Ontario - the partners hope to retire more than 3,000 air conditioners. Meanwhile Toronto Hydro has already signed up more than 12,000 Torontonians for peakSAVER AC with a goal of signing up a total of 50,000 residential and small business customers by mid 2007. This would achieve an overall savings of 90 megawatts of power during peak periods. That's enough electricity to power approximately 90,000 homes.

Toronto Hydro's peakSAVER AC for residential and small businesses involves the free installation of a special wireless device on homeowners' central air conditioning systems by Toronto Hydro. This device will cycle down the system for short periods and customers barely register a change in temperature.

"Toronto Hydro customers have already helped us save 90 million kilowatt hours of electricity in Toronto," said Dr. Richard Lu, Chief Conservation Officer, Toronto Hydro Corporation. "We're calling on them now to participate in the peakSAVER AC and Keep Cool programs to get us closer to relieving Toronto's electricity grid of 250 megawatts during peak periods by 2007."

During Keep Cool and at anytime throughout the year, The Home Depot associates can help customers make the right choices when it comes to all their home improvement projects, including choosing from the retailer's wide selection of energy-efficient room and central air conditioning systems.

About The Home Depot Canada

Founded in 1978, in Atlanta, Georgia, The Home Depot is the world's largest home improvement retailer currently operating 2,065 stores, including 142 The Home Depot stores across Canada. The Company reported fiscal 2005 sales of US$81.5 billion and employs approximately 355,000 associates, including more than 26,000 Canadians.

About the Clean Air Foundation

The Clean Air Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to developing, implementing and managing public engagement programs and other strategic initiatives that lead to measurable emission reductions, to improve air quality and protect the climate.

About Toronto Hydro Electric-System Limited

A subsidiary of Toronto Hydro Corporation, Toronto Hydro-Electric System Limited is one of the largest municipal electric distribution utilities in Canada, delivering electricity to more than 677,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers. Its annual revenues are $2.7 billion; peak demand is 5,005 megawatts; and its workforce of 1,313 skilled professionals is dedicated to delivering a safe and reliable supply of electricity to customers in an environmentally responsible manner.

CP photo available upon request.

Contact Information

  • For more information, or to schedule an interview,
    media should contact:
    Elissa Zaks/Elliott Chun, Weber Shandwick Worldwide
    (416) 642-7969/7962
    Ersilia Serafini, The Clean Air Foundation
    (416) 922-9038 (ext. 242)
    Karen Evans, Toronto Hydro
    (416) 542-3037 or (416) 902-9436
    Tiziana Baccega, The Home Depot
    (416) 412-6570