Government of Canada invests $43m in clean technology innovation

The government of Canada is investing CAN$43 million (€27m) in the clean technology sector to help create jobs and stimulate growth in the environmental sector.

Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Navdeep Bains announced an investment of up to $20 million to support clean energy projects at the pre-commercialisation stage.

This investment, part of a $40-million joint initiative that includes matching funds from the province of British Columbia, will help companies with innovative projects at the prototype, field testing and demonstration stages.

According to the government, interested parties will be able to submit their applications in early April 2017 to Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC).

Bains also announced funding for two companies based in British Columbia that are developing innovations that will lower carbon emissions, build healthier communities and contribute to a cleaner environment for all Canadians. He said that this was to help Canada’ s goal of becoming a centre for global innovation and clean growth.

The funding is being provided through SDTC, which works with Canadian companies to bring groundbreaking clean technologies to market.

The investments include a $10-million non-repayable contribution to the Automotive Fuel Cell Cooperation (AFCC), a Burnaby-based joint venture with Germany's Daimler AG and Ford Motor Company.

Through this joint venture, AFCC is developing new fuel cell modules to be used in automotive applications. This exciting new technology has the potential to reduce the difference in cost between fuel cell and combustion engine vehicles. As well, the project has drawn over $70 million in global investment into Canada, for a total project value of $88 million.

Low-cost biofuels

The second project is led by Canfor Pulp Products, a well-known global producer of premium pulp and paper products that is also one of North America's largest green energy producers.

The $13-million non-repayable contribution through SDTC will enable Canfor to further develop and demonstrate a technology that will take what is a currently a waste product from its production processes and develop it into a low-cost biofuels product. Canfor's new biocrude could be refined by existing refineries into next-generation biofuels and biochemicals that can be easily integrated into conventional fuels markets.

A focus on clean technology, innovation and growth is a core element of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. Through the framework, Canada will focus on having globally competitive Canadian businesses as we transition to a low-carbon economy.

Canada's “Innovation Agenda” promotes clean growth, good jobs and higher living standards for the middle class.

Speaking about the investment, Bains said: "Our government is proud to support Canadian clean tech and advanced manufacturing companies like AFCC and Canfor. Through innovation, these two firms will make great advances in energy efficiency, leading to lower carbon emissions, healthier communities and a cleaner environment.

“Our government will continue to work with partners to invest in clean technologies that lead to better jobs, better opportunities and a better living standard for the middle class."

Sustainable Development Technology Canada president and CEO Leah Lawrence added: "Canadian companies are partnering to lead on clean technology innovation, from fuel cells to biofuels. The investments announced today will create new jobs and provide environmental benefits to British Columbians and all Canadians."

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