Launching Ontario's Green Button.

At a media event on November 21, 2012, the Ontario Minister of Energy announced a partnership with MaRS Discovery District to launch a Green Button initiative in the province.

Minister Chris Bentley stressed the importance of common data standards and platforms as an avenue to provide more choice and control to Ontario energy consumers. The partnership with MaRS, the Clean Energy Institute and Data Catalyst will help establish common standards and platforms—initiatives in the United States and in the Netherlands have already started exploring the idea of standard platforms—that will help consumers have easier access to their smart meter data, and give them the ability to share that data with solution and service providers to better understand and manage their consumption.

At the event, Joe Greenwood, director of MaRS Data Catalyst, stressed the importance of enabling that ecosystem of data sharing and use: “Data is as essential to today’s economy as energy, and its effective use is critical to driving innovation and economic growth.”

Data Catalyst has been exploring the market impact of accessible energy data and has been working with the industry and innovators to set the groundwork for this initiative. We look forward to your input and feedback on this initiative so that we can bring your thoughts and ideas to the working group.

Across the web, many people were excited and intrigued by the Minister’s announcement. You can find a Storify highlighting some of the reactions from across the web here.