Following 2018 success, City of Toronto issues its second green bond

The City of Toronto this week issued its second green bond offering of $200 million. Toronto was one of the first municipalities in Canada to establish a Green Debenture Program, with net proceeds to finance capital projects that mitigate, and adapt to, the effects of climate change.

This $200 million issue with a 20-year maturity and a coupon interest rate of 2.65 per cent, will mature on September 24, 2039 and settle on September 24, 2019. This represents the lowest borrowing cost the City of Toronto has been able to achieve for a 20-year term. Compared to a typical bond issuance, this bond yielded savings for the City of approximately $600,000.

Green bonds help fund capital projects that meet the City’s environmental objectives, including:
• mitigation and adaptation to the effects of climate change
• abatement and avoidance of GHG emissions
• resource recovery and a hierarchical approach to waste management, and
• air, water and soil pollution prevention and control.

Some of the City projects that will be financed through green bonds include:
• revitalizing the Port Lands with the Port Lands flood protection
• renewing various City buildings, such as Toronto Community Housing buildings with energy efficiency retrofits, such as upgraded lighting
• expanding cycling infrastructure, and
• installing solar panels at City facilities to generate at least five per cent of its energy.

The City of Toronto Green Bond Program has also received positive second opinion from Sustainalytics for its framework. Sustainalytics is a world leader in providing second opinions on the qualification of Green Bond Framework.

Quotes:

“The City of Toronto, as Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, has a responsibility to lead and take action to address the global threat of climate change. Green bonds are one more way the City of Toronto is demonstrating its commitment to being a clean, green and sustainable city. The funds from the green bonds will ensure that we can make important investments to maintain and improve the health of the environment for present and future generations, such as public transit.”
– Mayor John Tory

“The low cost of borrowing this way helps us finance key capital projects that support the City of Toronto’s environmental goals, contribute to the city’s health and help the local economy.”
– Councillor Gary Crawford (Ward 20 Scarborough Southwest), Chair of the City’s Budget Committee

“With an increasing number of investors looking for environmentally and socially responsible investment opportunities, the City is excited to be a leader in the public sector and partner with industry to make real change, and reduce our carbon footprint. Engaging with the capital markets through green bond offerings is a new venture. But it is also an important tool that will help the City deliver tangible and sustainable outcomes, financially and environmentally.”
– Heather Taylor, Chief Financial Officer, City of Toronto

More information about the City’s Green Debenture Program can be found at https://www.toronto.ca/city-government/budget-finances/city-finance/investor-relations/green-debenture-program/.

More information about the City’s TransformTO Climate Action Strategy is available at https://www.toronto.ca/services-payments/water-environment/environmentally-friendly-city-initiatives/transformto/transformto-climate-action-strategy/.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of more than 2.9 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world’s most livable cities. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit http://www.toronto.ca, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/cityoftoronto, on Instagram at http://www.instagram.com/cityofto or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/cityofto

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