May 15, 2020

Ottawa—Investing in communities is vital to achieving Canada’s goals—creating jobs, meeting our environmental objectives, and building affordable and liveable communities for residents. But aging housing stock, rising energy costs and increasing demand for affordable housing, have created a unique challenge for municipalities and other affordable housing providers working to build better lives.

That is why the Federation of Canadian Municipalities is announcing a new initiative—funded by the Government of Canada as part of its $950-million investment in the Green Municipal Fund (GMF) announced in Budget 2019—to support local affordable housing providers to retrofit existing affordable housing, or build new, energy efficient units that emit lower GHG emissions.

Our front-line expertise enables us to get results where Canadians need it most. That is why we are continuing to deliver on program objectives with our federal partners—helping municipalities build better lives for Canadians.

The $300-million Sustainable Affordable Housing initiative assists municipal providers, not-for-profit organizations, or housing cooperatives with grants, loans, and capacity-building resources to support the construction and retrofitting of energy-efficient affordable housing; help offset the costs of building and retrofitting affordable housing to a higher energy performance standard; and, help decrease operational costs for housing providers or increase long-term affordability of energy costs for residents occupying these units.

Through this initiative, GMF is targeting over 6,000 retrofitted and new housing units, with ambitious performance targets. These retrofits will cut energy use by at least 25 percent; and new builds will meet Net Zero Energy (or Energy Ready) standards—like Passive House or LEED Platinum and solar-ready.


"The COVID-19 health crisis has reinforced the importance of ensuring that all Canadians have a safe and affordable place to call home. The Government of Canada is proud to be working with the Federation of Canadian Municipalities through the Green Municipal Fund to help improve existing affordable housing and build new units that are energy efficient. It is through investments like these that we will help build green, healthy, and more resilient communities where Canadian families can thrive for many years to come."

The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

"While we work together to stop the spread of COVID-19, we have to keep our communities strong and resilient. Canadians told us they wanted a plan to help make homes more efficient, more affordable, and more comfortable. The Sustainable Affordable Housing Initiative is a big part of putting that plan into action; it creates affordable housing, reduces pollution and will create jobs at a time when they’re needed most."

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources

"Efficient homes reduce emissions and make life more affordable by lowering energy bills, and building them promotes innovation and creates good jobs. Supporting the Sustainable Affordable Housing initiative is one of the many ways Canada is working toward exceeding our Paris Agreement targets and achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. This initiative will help build sustainable, resilient communities across the country, and I look forward to seeing the benefits these projects will bring to Canadians."

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

"Local solutions—scaled up—deliver major national impact, like economic growth and the emission reductions Canada needs to meet our Paris agreement targets. Local governments get the job done efficiently and cost-effectively because they connect solutions to local needs and local realities. That idea lies at the heart of our federal-municipal partnership. This new chapter in the Green Municipal Fund success story shows that when federal and local governments work together, they deliver results for Canadians."

Bill Karsten, President, Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Quick facts

  • Through its unique mix of training, resources and funding, the Green Municipal FundTM (GMF) builds communities’ capacity to design and implement sustainability initiatives.
  • Since 2000, GMF has helped bring over 1,300 projects to life – making life better for millions of Canadians.
  • GMF-funded projects have cut 2.6 million tonnes of GHG emissions – the equivalent of taking 594,000 cars off the road. GMF supports local innovation that can be replicated and scaled up across the country to tackle Canada’s climate challenges.
  • GMF has created over 10,700 jobs across the country.
  • The Green Municipal Fund is a one-billion-dollar program, delivered by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and funded by the Government of Canada.
  • GMF was endowed with an additional $950 million federal investment in the 2019 federal Budget to scale up its mission to drive cost-saving energy-efficiency across Canada and deliver results to Canadians.

Associated links

Green Municipal Fund
Sustainable Affordable Housing initiative

For more information

FCM Media Relations, 613-907-6395,

Green Municipal Fund
Sustainable Affordable Housing
© 2021 Federation of Canadian Municipalities