Windfall 2014 News Archives

Transforming personal transportation

Green Communities discusses Windfall EV study

Windfall Centre recently released its in-depth study of the economic impact of Electric Vehicle (EV) adoption in Ontario. The year-long research project, dispels myths and fills a significant knowledge gap on the impacts of what could well be a transformative shift in personal transportation in the 21st century.

Read Green Communities post

Free home winterproofing

Free energy efficiency improvements to your home

Available to home owners and renters

Don't miss out on this FREE program. The Home Winterproofing Program is absolutely free to all qualifying homes. Enbridge will pay for the cost of the energy efficiency improvements such as insulation and draft proofing measures.

Free home winterproofing

Winter is here

Is your home ready for the cold?

Windfall can provide you with the knowledge on how your home uses energy and where it is being wasted. Our energy advisors will show you how to improve the comfort of your home, cut heating and cooling costs, access available grants/incentives, and ensure you have adequate, healthy ventilation.

More on home energy assessments

Alternatives Journal reports on Windfall EV study

If we can look past the short-term losses, shifting from traditional vehicles to EVs would be a massive economic boon – and help meet ambitious GHG reduction targets.

Read about Windfall's EV study in Alternatives Journal

Community Energy Conservation Program Expanded

Energy efficiency incentives now available in new areas

Postal codes include Pickering, Ajax, Brampton and Mississauga

The Enbridge Community Energy Conservation Program which was available in York Region and select areas in Toronto has now expanded. Specific postal codes are now included to qualify for up to $2000 in incentives for making energy efficient upgrades that reduce gas consumption in the home.

Find out which postal codes qualify

Manufacturing Electric Vehicles for Ontario market would boost economy by $3.6 billion

Windfall Centre releases year-long EV economic impact study

EVs would also help achieve emission reduction targets

Windfall Centre has released its in-depth study of the economic impact of Electric Vehicle (EV) adoption in Ontario. The year-long research project, dispels myths and fills a significant knowledge gap on the impacts of what could well be a transformative shift in personal transportation in the 21st century. If EVs reach a 10% share of the total passenger vehicle population by 2025, Ontario can expect total income to increase by over $3.6 Billion with 34,000 person years of work created.

Also, released today is the GT80 Calculator, an innovative on-line tool designed to assist policy makers, educators, and other stakeholders in modeling the economic and environmental outcomes of user defined EV adoption scenarios.

Download the report

The E-Mazing Race is Back!

Tour the Sun Country Highway Charging Network

Event launches September 29th across North America

The E-mazing Race is about to kick off and participants will tour the Sun Country Highway Charging Network. The event will bring attention to the advances made in the electric vehicle movement as well as raise fund for further EV infrastructure development.

The official launch will take place Monday September 29, 2014 in Summerside, PEI (exact location to be announced) as well as various secondary launch cities across the continent. Not a race to the finish; but an epic EV challenge to visit the most Sun Country Highway charging stations and collect the most points in a one month period.

Find out more or sign up

Emerald Ash Borer Information Workshop

Learn, Talk, Act. Help Reduce the EAB Impact

Join York Region on October 6th

Ash trees in York Region are dying because of Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect that attacks and kills ash trees. Discover how EAB will affect your woodlot. Talk with experts and learn about local forest managment resources.

Find out more or Register for a session

National Drive Electric Week Is Now On

Celebrate and learn about electric vehicles

Attend an event, volunteer and get involved!

Started in 2011, National Drive Electric Week is a nationwide celebration to heighten awareness of today's widespread availability of plug-in vehicles and highlight the benefits of all-electric and plug-in hybrid-electric cars.

There are numerous events taking place which are being led by local plug-in drivers and advocates and typically includes some combination of EV parades, ride-and-drives, electric tailgate parties, press conferences, award ceremonies, informational booths, and more.

Learn more, find an event get some resources

Enter to win $500 by completing a septic survey

Tell us about your onsite water treatment system

Information will be used to develop a Rural Safe Water Program

An estimated 1.2 million Ontarians rely on onsite wastewater treatment systems (commonly called septic systems) to dispose of the water that leaves their sinks, showers and toilets. If you're one of those residents, we want to hear from you! By filling out the survey, you can enter to win $500 towards septic system upgrades, effluent filter installation, maintenance or repairs.

Take The Survey Now

Conservation First Tool Kit available for review

Toolkit will help with design of energy conservation programs

Stakeholders are encouraged to submit their comments

The Conservation First Framework will provide local distribution companies (LDCs) with long term, stable funding for Conservation and Demand Management (CDM) programs. It will give LDCs greater flexibility and autonomy to design and deliver conservation programs that meet local needs, strengthen regional collaboration and cooperation with natural gas utilities and enhance accountability on the part of the OPA and distributors to deliver cost-effective conservation programs.

In collaboration with LDCs, the Electricity Distributors Association and natural gas utilities, the OPA has developed a draft Tool Kit that will help LDCs design their CDM Plans to cost effectively meet local customer needs. The Tool Kit was launched on July 31, 2014.

Download the Toolkit

Community Gardens in the City of Vaughan

The City is looking for feedback from residents

Help shape the community garden program

The City of Vaughan is interested in understanding the general demand for and interest in community gardens in the City of Vaughan. They are looking for ideas, thoughts and feedback. If you are a resident of Vaughan, please complete the short survey.

Learn more about community gardens.

OSEA Green Energy Doors Open - October 4th

Tour success stories of conservation, community engagement and sustainable energy development

Windfall Centre is hosting an event from 10am-2pm

Come take a tour at Windfall Centre, located in the heritage Sheppard Family estate in the Sheppard Bush Conservation Area. The tour highlights how a historical building can incorporate energy conservation and renewable energy retrofits to reduce a homes carbon footprint. Interested attendees can also take a  test ride in our all electric vehicle, a Nissan leaf!

More than 90 host sites are already confirmed to hold a variety of events across the province, including Windfall Centre.

Submit your green energy event or find one near you

Enbridge Spring into Winter Campaign

Windfall is Seeking Eligible Enbridge Gas Customers

$20 Shoppers Drug Mart Gift Cards to the first 200 participants

We are looking for older homes in Durham Region! Income-eligible Enbridge Gas customers with homes built in the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s may qualify for upgrades under the Enbridge Winterproofing Program.

The Winterproofing Program is a free program designed to help income-eligible Enbridge customers to save money on their energy bills and make their homes more energy efficient.

If you're a Durham Region Enbridge customer living in an older leaky home, call us today to fill out an application.

Learn More and Find Out How To Apply

Forest Bug and Butterfly Hunt

See, learn and catch bugs and butterflies

Event takes place August 24th from 10am to 3pm

Use nets to hunt for bugs and butterflies, then return them to the wild. Learn about the good, the bad and the ‘bugly' insects that make the forest their home. Event is hosted by York Region in East Gwillimbury.

Register for this FREE Event

Electric Cars Change How You Power Your Home

Homes will generate and store their own electricity

Electric cars will balance energy demand and act as storage.

Electric vehicles are our fastest-growing alternative to oil-derived gasoline. Solar panels are our fastest-growing alternative to coal-powered electricity. They're both getting less expensive and more effective, and there's new evidence that these two great tastes can taste particularly great together.

Opower studied the power-consumption habits of about 2,000 plug-in electric-vehicle owners enrolled in “time-of-use” pricing programs. Opower found that EV owners did respond to the incentives to charge during off-peak hours and they were more likely to have solar on their home.

Read The Full Article from Time Magazine

Windfall Centre Welcomes "Frankie Flowers"

Frankie Flowers is Author, Gardener and TV Personality

We are pleased to have Frank and his team join us in Aurora

Frank Ferragine "Frankie Flowers" is arguably Canada's most popular and trusted gardening authority and weatherman.  He is known for a combination of practical advice with the spice of humour and a huge injection of passion for plants and everything gardening. Frank has made Windfall Centre is home and we are pleased to have someone with a similar vision sharing our space.

Learn More About Frankie Flowers

Find Out Where To Get Farm Fresh Foods

Farm Fresh 2014 Guide Now Available

The Guide Lets You Know Where Fresh Food is in York Region

If you love the freshest of food (and who doesn't), be sure to treat yourself to a trip to York Region's many farmer's markets and farm stands. Just-picked produce tastes better than food shipped it from thousands of miles away. You can taste the difference!

Find Your Local Farm Fresh Options

Festival recipes now available

Make your own local food meals at home

Recipes from Bob Blumer and Meghan Telpner

If you had a chance to check out the Local Food Fiesta at the 13th Annual Windfall Ecology Festival, or if you missed it all together, you now have the opportunity to make these great meal ideas at home.

Download the recipes

Community garden open at Sheppards Bush

Grow your own fruits and vegetables

LSRCA encourages getting back to roots

The Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority has officially opened their community garden located in Sheppard's Bush, Aurora. There are still plots available and it is a great way to grow your own food and learn techniques from local gardeners.

To reserve a spot contact Wanda Black:
Phone: 905-895-1281 x222

13th annual Windfall Festival was a success!

Electric cars, vendors and celebrities were the highlights

Community enjoyed discovering SM4RT Living actions

Another festival has passed and it was a great success. There was a great turnout, despite the weather on Sunday. Windfall Centre would like to send a big Thank You to all of the vendors, volunteers, staff, attendees, musicians and chefs who helped make this festival possible.

Read the article

Greenbelt and Oak Ridges Moraine Review

Open houses taking place June 10th and June 11th

Provide your feedback and ensure on these important plans

Both the Greenbelt Plan and Oak Ridges Moraine Conservation Plan are up for Provincial review in 2015. The Regional Municipality of York wants feedback from residents, businesses and organizations across York Region. The Region is holding open houses to solicit input and provide information on these important plans.

Learn More

Windfall Centre and Power Tool Chef Team Up

The kitchen is a science lab for Chef Francois Kern

Food show is part of the festivals local food fiesta

When most people use a food processor, he uses a super chopper: three axes powered by a drill.

You will have a chance to see Chef Francois in action at the 13th annual Windfall Ecology Festival June 7 and 8 at Fairy Lake Park in Newmarket.

As part of the event, there will be a local food fiesta celebrating locally grown healthy foods with guests such as Bob Blumer from the Surreal Gourmet and Glutton for Punishment.

Check out the crazy video

Pilot project in Newmarket will save energy

Families save energy, gain rewards and help the hospital

A new approach to encouraging energy conservation

For this pilot, called engagingNewmarket, the starting point is the utility's peaksaver PLUS smart thermostat, paired with Zerofootprint's software, which rewards consumers with GOODcoins for saving electricity at home," says Paul Ferguson, president of Newmarket-Tay Power Distribution. "Consumers then choose the equipment they want their GOODcoins to help Southlake acquire.

Find out more about this pilot project

Recycle Your Unwanted Pharmaceuticals

Protect our local water sources

Take back event taking place @ the Windfall Ecology Festival

Traces of pharmaceuticals are being detected in our rivers, lakes, drinking water and soil.  One of the ways they get into the environment is by consumers throwing medications and other personal care products in the garbage, or flushing them down the toilet or the sink.

Learn more about the take back program

Free Healthier Home Seminar

Learn about local foods and home-made cleaning products

Sunday June 8th @ Fairy Lake Park, Newmarket

York Region and Windfall Centre are offering Green and Healthy Home Seminar at the upcoming 13th Annual Windafall Ecology Festival.

Explore some easy ways to create a healthier, greener home for you and your family. Local chef Laurie-Ann Fisher and Windfall Centre's Andrea Bolton will offer a selection of simple dishes using seasonal, local foods and show youhow to create your own home-made cleaning products.

Event takes please in the Local Food Fiesta tent @ 11am

Find out more about the Windfall Festival

Bob Blumer at Windfall Ecology Festival

Reserve your FREE ticket for June 7th

Limited number of tickets available

Gastronaut, artist and seven time Guinness World Record holder Bob Blumer is the creator and host of the television series Surreal Gourmet, and Glutton for Punishment, and a producer and host of World's Weirdest Restaurants. His shows air on various networks in over twenty countries world-wide.

Bob Blumer will be appearing at the 13th Annual Windfall Ecology Festival in the culinary theatre as part of the Local Food Fiesta. Bob's artful approach to cooking, confidence-inspiring instructions, and contagious enthusiasm will be used to showcase healthy and nutritious eating options made with Ontario produced foods.

When you reserve your seat, you will be entered to win 1 of 20 VIP tickets which includes priority seating and sampling opportunities.

Reserve Your Seat Today

Explore the Impacts of Climate Change

U.S National Climate Assessment releases interactive report

View by region, sectors and mitigation strategies

There are many reports on the impacts of climate change, but few provide the reader an opportunity to interact with the information. The U.S National Climate Assessment Report allows readers to view model simulations, compare data and explore the impacts of climate change now and in the future.

Check out the report and start exploring!

More Festival Headliners Announced

The Water Brothers, Celebrity Chefs and Tim Chaisson

Just part of the line up at the Windfall Ecology Festival

On Saturday June 7th, The Water Brothers will be on the festival Main Stage to discuss water in York Region, and the launch of the ‘I Don't Flush' campaign.

The Power Tool Chef and Chef Meghan Telpner will be on our culinary stage on Sunday June 8th

Tim Chaisson is the 2013 East Coast Music Awards winner for "Roots Album of the Year" & 2013 Canadian Organization of Campus Activities winner for "Main Stage Performer of the Year.

Check out the festival schedule

Join Smart Commute for Bike To Work Day

Celebrate cycling and enter to win a new commuter bike

Kicks off May 26th at Newmarket Riverwalk Commons.

Ever wanted to cycle to work? Bike to Work Day is a great opportunity to kick-start the cycling season. Join Smart Commute Central York for a complimentary continental breakfast at Newmarket Riverwalk Commons, easily accessible by the Tom Taylor Trail. Check out exhibits, receive a free t-shirt and enter to win great draw prizes.

8th Annual Bike to Work Day Newmarket Riverwalk Commons,200 Doug Duncan Drive7:45 - 9:00 a.m.

Find out more and enter to win a new bike!

Funding available for environmental projects

LSRCA funding program covers tree planting to septic tanks

New for this year rain gardens

he Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority's Landowner Environmental Assitance Program (LEAP) provides free technical support and financial grants that aim to help you complete environmental projects on your property. LEAP is offered to all Lake Simcoe watershed residents and includes funding from upgrading septic systems to planting trees on your property.

The new pilot program for 2014 now includes funding for establishing a rain garden on your property.

Visit the LEAP website

Drastic reduction in emissions is needed

Global warming impacts could 'sprial out of control'

Impacts can be reduced through adaptation and mitigation

The Interngovernmental Panel on Climate Change Working Group just released its assessment of impacts, adaptation, and vulnerability of climate change as part of the IPCC's Fifth Assessment Report. The report outlines that the risks associated with climate change are worse than originally anticipated and calls for immediate and drastic actions. There is still time to act but our window of opportunity is closing.

Read the full report

saveONenergy coupon event is back

Get instant savings on energy efficient products

Event starts March 28th to April 27th, 2014

Twice each year, saveONenergy coupons are available in-store at participating retailers for instant savings across a wide range of energy-efficient products, including LED bulbs and increased incentives on specialty CFLs.

Download coupons and find an eligible retailer

Free Greener Home and Garden Seminars

York Region has a seminar for everyone

Learn about native plants, composting and much more!

York Region in partnership with Toronto Region annd Conservation Authority, is offering a series of educational seminars to provide tips, tricks and advice for water efficiency in your home and garden, reducing our consumption and experiencing our natural environment. All seminars are free but advance registration is required.

Find out topics and schedule

Celebrate Canada's Water Week

Join York Region and Windfall Centre

Free event on March 18th

Canada Water Week is a celebration of water from coast-to-coast, held annually in the 3rd week of March to coincide with World Water Day on March 22nd. Windfall Centre and other organizations will be pat of York Region's showcase of water at York Region's Administrative Centre on Tuesday March 18th.

The event runs from 10am-1pm, all are welcome.

Learn more about Water Week

Film 'Watermark' now available for download

Canadian photographer tackles water in his latest film

Use discount code 'windfall' to get a special discount

Edward Burtynsky, known for his film Manufactured Landscapes, releases his new film Watermark. This stunning film brings together stories from around the globe about our relationship with one of the most magnificent forces of nature – water. Starting February 25th, use the discount code 'windfall' to get a special discount on the digital download of the film.

Get your digital download of Watermark

Film 'Watermark' now available for download

Canadian photographer tackles water in his latest film

Use discount code 'windfall' to get a special discount

Edward Burtynsky, known for his film Manufactured Landscapes, releases his new film Watermark. This stunning film brings together stories from around the globe about our relationship with one of the most magnificent forces of nature – water. Starting February 25th, use the discount code 'windfall' to get a special discount on the digital download of the film.

Get your digital download of Watermark

Get to know Sheppard's Bush

Living In Aurora Blog highlights Windfall Centre's home

Editor of Blog captures photos of winter art and graffati

Writer, editor and photographer for the community FOCUS community engagement blog for the Town of Aurora, Anna Lozyk Romeo, has released a photo journey of her time at Sheppard's Bush. Home to Windfall Centre, Sheppard's Bush Conservation Area offers beautiful surrounding, wildlife encounters and walking trails.

View the photo blog

What does our energy future look like?

Ontario's long term energy plan available

Plan encourages energy conservation as the first step.

With coal out of Ontario's energy mix, the Province is faced with addressing how our energy needs will be met, which infrastructure to invest in and how to include communities moving forward. The plan encourages energy efficiency and conservation, a critical component to reducing demand and our greenhouse gas emissions.

Learn about the plan and where your energy comes from

City of Toronto launches new pilot program

Home Energy Loan Program helps with home energy projects

Program is now accepting applications in pilot neighbourhoods

The Home Energy Loan Program (HELP) is a new financing tool offered by the City of Toronto to help you improve your home's energy efficiency and save money. The program was developed to assist homeowners to access low interest financing to complete energy and water efficiency improvement projects.

Home Energy Loan Program

Free webinar on climate change adaptation

Learn how your community will be impacted

Webinars put on by the Lake Simcoe Community of Practice

The presentation will provide an overview of the socio-economic implications of climate change and climate change adaptation at a community level. Through the use of case study examples, the talk will explore a few analytical tools and techniques that can be used to help communities better understand their vulnerability to a changing climate, and how to develop and assess adaptation strategies.

Sign up today

Free incubator program for all sectors

Refine your entrepreneurship and sustainability skills

Program is now accepting applications for 2014

While many ideas are inventive, they lack the tools, training, and entrepreneurial edge to become real solutions for today's complex issues. The York Entrepreneurship Development Institute (YEDI) is a startup incubator and rigorous institute focused on equipping innovators with the entrepreneurial know-how, resources, and networks necessary for project success. Ensure your small business thrives while incorporating sustainable business entrepreneurship practices.

Find out more and apply

Win tickets to Quebec City or Ripley's aquarium

Smart Commutes Carpool Week starts February 3rd

Prizes available for those who register on Carpool Zone

Find a friend, cozy up and start carpooling. Ditching your car and riding with someone else saves you time, money and your impact on the environment. Smart Commutes Carpool Zone makes it easy to find a ride match.

Register or login in today for a chance to win great prizes.

Longest green highway creator recognized

Sun Country Hwy receives the Clean Tech Award

Named the world's "Best Authomotive Solutions Company"

Sun Country Hwy, who created the worlds longest green highway was recognized for being an industry leader who have set out to put the electric vehicle market forward. One of their EV chargers was generously donated to our Centre in Aurora. This level 2 charger provides power for our Nissan Leaf and other local EV drivers as part of our Drive Electric program

Find out more about electric vehicles

Enbridge expands areas eligible for incentives

Areas now include the GTA, Ottawa and Niagara

Up to $2000 available for energy efficient upgrades

Originally only available in York Region and 2 Wards in Toronto, the Community Energy Conservation Program is now available in Black Creek, Burnhamthorpe, Scarborough and other postal code areas.

Check your postal code and eligibility

7 electrical utilities achieve energy saving goals

Woodstock Hydro leads Ontario in energy conservation

Other utilities need to play catch up

Woodstock Hydro gained top place by exceeding the 2011-2014 conservation targets set by Government of Ontario and the Ontario Energy Board by 152% in just two years. In contrast, Hydro One had achieved only 45% of its target by the end of 2012 and Toronto Hydro had achieved 78% of its target.

Energy conservation is the lowest cost and fastest way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the need for expensive new electricity generation and transmission capacity.

Find out how your electrical utility performed.

2013 archives