The province is helping Capital Health switch from oil to natural gas, bringing a new, cleaner-burning energy source to the Halifax peninsula. “This is an investment in the future health of Nova Scotians,” said Premier Rodney MacDonald. “We are helping to provide a reliable, efficient and cleaner energy source to residents and staff at Capital Health.” By switching to natural gas, Capital Health is expected to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by about 20,000 tonnes a year. The introduction of natural gas will also help diversify the Halifax energy market. Capital Health establishes an “anchor load” that enables Heritage Gas to build a pipeline across the Halifax harbour to deliver natural gas to the peninsula. This has created more opportunities to expand natural gas use in Halifax. “Natural gas will encourage competition and create options for people to maximize their energy efficiency,” said Energy Minister Bill Dooks. “Nova Scotia has tremendous natural-gas potential — we’ve got it, let’s use it.” “We want to congratulate the government, businesses and homeowners for their vision in making natural gas possible for the Halifax community,” said Ray Ritcey, President of Heritage Gas. “We look forward to serving you and providing you with a truly modern, environmentally friendly energy choice for today, and the years ahead.” The province will support the Capital Health conversion with an initial commitment of up to $3.5 million. The province has already supported natural gas conversion projects in Burnside and in health-care facilities in Amherst and Dartmouth.