Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty promised $650 million for the embattled auto industry to help create "green cars" and clean technology on Tuesday.

McGuinty made the announcement at a General Motors plant in Oshawa, Ont., and said the funds are part of a massive new job creation strategy.

The funds are expected to secure high-paying jobs by developing clean and green technologies and businesses in Ontario.

"We're doing this because there is a tremendous opportunity before us. Someone out there is bound to make a lot of money and someplace is bound to create a lot of jobs by researching and developing solutions," McGuinty said during his speech.

Canadian Auto Workers president Buzz Hargrove said the new funds will help to maintain and create new jobs in a very important sector of Ontario's economy.

"We are going to strengthen our industry while we deal with the environmental problem," Hargrove said during the press conference.

He said it was essential for Canada to offer incentives to the auto industry in order to stay competitive with other countries doing the same.

Hargrove said Canada has an opportunity to be a leader in green technology as most countries continue to fund research and produce green technologies.

"Nobody around the world is doing a great job," he said of the current batch of hybrids and fuel-efficient vehicles.

"This does give us an opportunity if the business community takes advantage of it, which they will."

McGuinty said Ottawa needs to come up with similar incentives in order for the entire country to benefit from green technologies.

The fund is modelled after the $500-million Ontario Automotive Investment Strategy which has generated $7 billion in investment in the province in four years.

In order to tap into the reserved funds, companies will have to prove they can help Ontario become a global leader in green technology.

Companies will also have to provide proof that their operations will cut emissions in the province before any funds are granted.

"The fact is, Ontario is Canada's economic heartland. Our economy helps power this magnificent country of ours," McGuinty said.

"I'm calling on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to join business, labour and innovators, and our government, in building a stronger Ontario for a stronger Canada."

With a report from CTV's Paul Bliss and files from the Canadian Press