B.C. and Canada partner on investment in clean-energy technology

Amrik Virk, B.C. Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services and the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development announced a $40-million partnership to support the development of pre-commercial clean-energy projects and technologies.

Amrik Virk, B.C. Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services and the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development announced a $40-million partnership to support the development of pre-commercial clean-energy projects and technologies. — Photo courtesy Government of BC/Flickr

Amrik Virk, B.C. Minister of Technology, Innovation and Citizens’ Services and the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Canada’s Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development announced a $40-million partnership to support the development of pre-commercial clean-energy projects and technologies.

“Working in partnership with the Government of Canada, we’re investing in B.C. clean-tech companies, encouraging innovation and enabling job growth, with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions,” said Virk. “Working together with clean, efficient, sustainable technology, we can change the world.”

Under the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change, British Columbia and the Government of Canada have agreed to work together to spur the development and commercialization of new technologies that will reduce emissions and create jobs for Canadians.

“The Government of Canada is proud to partner with the Province of British Columbia to support the development of Canadian clean tech companies,” said Bains. “Innovations in clean-energy projects create energy efficiencies that lead 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, better technologies and a better living standard for middle-class Canadians.”

The funding available through this joint fund will leverage federal, provincial and private sector investments. The $20-million provincial contribution comes from the Province’s Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund. The federal contribution will be provided through the SD Tech Fund, managed by Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC).

The parties will conduct a joint call over a three-year continuous intake period to seek out clean-energy projects and technologies that will mitigate or avoid provincial greenhouse gas emissions, including prototype deployment, field testing and commercial-scale demonstration projects. The call for expressions of interest will officially open in early April, 2017.

“SDTC is proud to partner with the B.C. ICE Fund on this opportunity for companies to access funding from both the federal and provincial governments,” said Leah Lawrence, president and CEO, Sustainable Development Technology Canada. “By partnering, our combined expertise will allow us to invest our funds in the technologies that will move us closer to the low-carbon economy leveraging regional strengths.”

The streamlined application process will provide companies with a one-window approach to support the development and demonstration of emerging clean technologies .The technology must be well suited for deployment in British Columbia.

“We’re very excited by this new funding and believe it presents a massive opportunity for B.C.’s clean energy innovators to solve real-world problems,” said Carl Anderson, president and CEO of the BC Innovation Council. “To support the Province’s environmental objectives, we will continue to leverage our position at the intersection of government, researchers, industry and regional community partners to support the development of innovative technologies that can generate economic growth in B.C.”

Funding to advance the development of pre-commercial clean-energy technology projects supports actions under the B.C. Climate Leadership Plan to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions while continuing to grow the economy and create jobs for B.C. families.

“Investments that boost commercialization success and build capabilities to grow are critical for tech companies in the clean tech sector,” said Bill Tam, president and CEO, BC Tech Association. “We require strong and joint partnerships between stakeholders to truly advance B.C.’s existing global brand for clean communities and position B.C. and Canada to be a global leader in clean tech.”

The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of B.C.’s vibrant technology sector and strengthen British Columbia’s diverse innovation economy. The multi-year strategy includes a $100-million BC Tech Fund and initiatives to increase talent development and market access for tech companies that will drive innovation and productivity throughout the province. In Budget 2017, the Province added an additional $87 million toward the #BCTECH Strategy.

Quick Facts:

  • The ICE Fund is designed to support government’s energy and environmental priorities and advance British Columbia’s clean-energy and technology sectors.
  • Since 2008, the ICE Fund – including today’s announcement – has committed approximately $97 million to support pre-commercial clean-energy technology projects, clean-energy vehicles, research and development, and energy efficiency programs.
  • SDTC is an arm’s-length foundation created by the Government of Canada to promote sustainable development and support projects that develop and demonstrate new technologies to address issues related to climate change, air quality, and clean water and soil. SDTC invests in Canadian companies that, through their innovative technologies, contribute positively to Canada by creating quality jobs, driving economic growth and protecting the environment.
  • Technology and Innovation is one of nine key sectors targeted in the BC Jobs Plan and a key driver for the B.C. economy.
  • Clean technology is one of five subsectors represented in the #BCTECH Strategy.
  • There are 6,400 jobs at more than 200 clean-tech companies in B.C., producing $1.6 billion in annual revenue.
  • The global clean-tech industry, including power generation, energy efficiency, transportation, and industrial processes that create green benefits, is expected to grow to $3 trillion per year by 2020.
  • The #BCTECH Summit is the largest technology conference in British Columbia, showcasing the province’s vibrant technology industry.
  • In August 2016, the B.C. government unveiled the Climate Leadership Plan, outlining 21 actions leading to the creation of up to 66,000 green jobs over the next 10 years, and reducing net annual greenhouse gas emissions by up to 25 million tonnes below current forecasts by 2050.

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