Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Steam to Hot Water Conversion

Advisory services
Public Works and Government Services Canada

Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) owns and operates seven Central Heating and Cooling Plants (CHCP) that provide heating and/or cooling for more than 100 buildings in the National Capital Area (NCA). Some of the plants that provide the heating and cooling services were built almost a century ago. The infrastructure is reaching the end of its life cycle and major investments will be required to modernize it and improve its energy efficiency, provide access to more sustainable energy resources and reduce the environmental footprint.

The business of providing energy has changed significantly since these plants were built. Consistent with PWGSC Real Property Branch’s (RPB) Corporate Real Estate Model (CREM) and the associated National Service Management Strategy (NSMS), this Energy Service Acquisition Project (ESAP) initiative seeks to move from operating energy assets and delivery services towards service management therefore becoming an “informal buyer.” PWGSC’s strategy is to seek a solution that is cleaner, greener, and more cost-effective through an innovative business arrangement. The selected business arrangement will draw on the expertise of leaders in the field of district energy to obtain maximum value from existing assets, predictable capitalization and operating costs, best value when establishing generation and distribution capabilities, and ultimately best value for the Canadian taxpayer. At this time, the preferred method of implementing ESAP will be a P3 (Public-Private Partnership) agreement, whereby a private partner is engaged to operate, maintain, and invest in the conversion of existing infrastructure to modernize the system while contributing to the government’s sustainability and greenhouse gas reduction objectives. With initial approvals, the Energy Services Acquisition Program planning is now in full development, with a goal of implementation in June 2019.

Ever-Green Energy’s Role: Advise the Federal Government in its planning to convert Ottawa’s five district heating systems from steam to hot water, and recapitalize both the heating and cooling systems. Ever-Green is collaborating with a large group of financial and technical consultants throughout this planning effort.

Mission Statement: The Energy Services Acquisition Project (ESAP) will transform how the government delivers heating and cooling services in the National Capital Area to significantly reduce costs, enhance the safety and reliability of operations while improving the environmental performance of our infrastructure.


Reduce the costs of heating and cooling for the federal government
This objective will be met through the conversion of the current steam-based technology to a low temperature hot water technology, which will reduce operating and maintenance costs. This conversion also translates into significant cost avoidance compared to continuing with a steam-based technology.

Increase safety and reliability of heating and cooling operations
This objective will be met through the use of a low temperature hot water technology that creates greater redundancy and improves the health and safety of working conditions.

Improve the Government of Canada’s environmental performance
This objective will be met through the implementation of a low temperature hot water technology which allows for the use of greener, renewable, low to non GHG emitting energy sources instead of fossil fuels. The replacement of the steam-driven chillers will result in the elimination of ozone depleting substance refrigerants.

Leverage the private sector’s innovation, capacity and expertise
This objective will be met through a long-term contractual agreement that will leverage the innovation, capacity and expertise of a private sector provider to operate and maintain the PWGSC energy infrastructure, considerably reducing the risks to the Crown. The resulting service management role of PWGSC will align with the Real Property Branch Corporate Real Estate Model.

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