On 1 October 2020, MPP Anand spoke about “Climate Change” as part of a Private Members’ Public Business statement. 

I rise today to support the motion 112 on hydrogen technology put forward by my colleague MPP Oosterhoff from Niagara West.

Just on a side note, I want to add that is was a PC government that actually established Ontario Hydro. I just want to put it on the record.

The history of fuel cells is not new. It can be traced back to 1839 when Welsh scientist, William Grove, first invented it. Famous scientist Thomas Edison actually said once, like other scientists of his day, that we are coming to understand that fossil fuels would not last forever. However, the world started paying attention to hydrogen technology during the oil crisis of the 1970s. Fast-forward to 2014, Toyota launched the first commercialized fuel cell vehicle after years of R&D and innovation.

Hydrogen is an energy carrier that can be used to store, move and deliver energy produced from other sources. As we know, through the Paris accord on climate change, there is an increasing global focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, while working to achieve long-term economic benefits. A fuel cell has zero emissions other than the water, and hydrogen and fuel cells can reduce the environmental impact of energy use while supporting job creation and economic prosperity using innovative, clean technologies.

Hydrogen fuel technology has a wide application in transportation. Stationary power through uninterruptible power supply, which is a UPS, and distributed power generation can help our remote communities—not just as a consumer; Ontario could be a producer and distributor of technologies.

Countries around the world are actually proactively investing in hydrogen and fuel cells to stay ahead of the curve. We, in Canada, are well positioned to benefit from growing international demand for hydrogen and fuel cells. Hydrogen is highlighted as a desired sector for private investment in our own Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan. This demonstrates our commitment to addressing climate change without a carbon tax. I will say it one more time: that demonstrates our commitment to addressing climate change without punishing our residents with a growth-killing tax. Madam Speaker, we need to act now. This motion would encourage a nestling industry to set up shop in Ontario.

Thanks to the Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium for organizing the first national hydrogen mobility innovation conference in my riding of Mississauga–Malton last year. Thanks for inviting me and giving me the opportunity to learn about this technology. This conference brought together industrial, economic and public sector stakeholders to foster collaborative innovation in hydrogen technology. Thanks to their advocacy, in the summer of 2019, the public transit operator in Herten, Germany, bought two hydrogen-powered fuel cell buses made by the Mississauga-based Hydrogenics corporation.

Again, finally, Madam Speaker, I want to say thank you to MPP Oosterhoff for your hard work in bringing this motion.