The Short Report - Nov. 10, 2021: Ottawa funds methane emissions monitoring, U of Sask. receives award to fund vaccine development, a swine research facility, and more

Cindy Graham
November 9, 2021


The Government of Canada has made its third investment in emission sensing technology company GHGSat (Montreal) through the Sustainable Technology Development Canada program. The $20-million contribution will support development of a high-resolution, satellite-based greenhouse gas detection system for the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP)'s International Methane Emissions Observatory (IMEO), an initiative that reports on global-scale methane emission impacts and trends with the support of the European Commission and the International Energy Agency. GHGSat closed its total Series B funding at US$45 million in July and has raised more than US$70 million since its inception in 2011. – GHGSat

The Weizmann Institute of Science and Weizmann Canada have announced a philanthropic donation of US$50 million from the Azrieli Foundation towards the establishment of The Azrieli Institute for Brain and Neural Sciences, a brain research hub in Rehovot, Israel that will foster interdisciplinary collaboration and the full spectrum of neuroscience research. The donation is on top of nearly US$30 million from previous Azrieli investments in Weizmann research facilities and faculty and student fellowships. – Weizmann Canada

The Government of Ontario and Ontario Pork are investing a combined $18 million to build a swine research facility in Elora, Ont., to drive research and innovation in the livestock industry. The Ontario government will invest $14.4 million and Ontario Pork will contribute $3.6 million towards the facility, which is being built in partnership with the University of Guelph. Meanwhile, the governments of Canada and Ontario are investing $1.3 million in the Ontario Beef Research Centre- Elora through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership towards beef nutritional research via a digitized precision feeding system to track and adjust the nutrition for individual cows as needed. – GoC 

Scotiabank is expanding its Net Zero Research Fund to $10 million to be distributed to project partners over the next ten years and has announced 2021 recipients for eleven projects from its $1-million inaugural fund launched last February. Recipients from the inaugural fund include academic and non-profit research institutions in Canada, the U.S. and Latin America. Scotiabank launched the fund to advance research in support of global decarbonization efforts back in February, and committed $1.25 million last December to support the Institute for Sustainable Finance (ISF) at Queen's University in its efforts to align mainstream financial markets with the transition to a low-carbon economy. – Cision

The University of Saskatchewan‘s Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization (VIDO) has been awarded $6 million for their work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic by the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), based in Oslo, Norway. The funding will help with COVID-19 vaccine R&D for lower income countries and future disease and pandemic responses and is part of CEPI’s $200-million program to advance the development of vaccines that provide broad protection against COVID-19 variants and other coronaviruses. The Vaccine Formulation Institute (VFI) in Switzerland is also partnering on the project. – VIDO

Alberta Innovates is inviting applications to its new Building with BioFibre program, making a total of $2 million available with up to $250,000 per project. The program is looking for ways to use hardwood, agriculture residual fibre, and crop resources to advance sustainable and technological innovation; it's also seeking development of green construction products using biocomposite materials and ways to advance prefabrication through automation and digital technologies. The deadline for submissions is Dec. 20, 2021. – Alberta Innovates

Innovative Solutions Canada has recently opened two new challenges for small businesses. The first is to develop a cost-competitive fiber optic sensing technology to monitor and maintain safe energy production, storage systems, and infrastructure. The challenge is being led by the National Research Council and is meant to build on its fiber Bragg grating technology, used in industrial sectors to monitor civil structures (bridges, hydroelectric dams, wind turbines), provide energy production and environmental monitoring (oil pipelines, gas turbines) and monitor green technologies (electric vehicle battery performance). Meanwhile, the RCMP is leading the small business challenge for an artificial intelligence decryption system that will process seized data files and generate word lists to access encrypted material. The deadline for applications for both challenges is Dec. 16, 2021. Winning small businesses may receive up to $150,000 to refine R&D and, if accepted into phase 2, receive up to $1 million to develop a working prototype. – GoC


Concordia University's early-stage startup incubator District 3 Innovation Hub and global life sciences venture adMare BioInnovations (Montreal) have joined to help startups in Canada’s life sciences ecosystem scale up faster with one-on-one coaching, funding, global expansion support and access to wet and dry lab facilities. The collaboration has seen Montreal-based startups Cura Therapeutics, Molecular Forecaster and Modelis accelerate through District 3 and adMare’s Accelerate Quebec Program. District 3 Launch and Grow Program  participants Simmunome and Perceiv AI are also being advised by adMare. – Concordia

Meanwhile, adMare and the Canadian Alliance for Skills and Training in Life Sciences (CASTL, Charlottetown) are partnering to facilitate the delivery of CASTL’s biopharmaceutical manufacturing training programs to enable effective scale-up of biomanufacturing facilities. – adMare

Space Q reports that Halifax-based aerospace company Maritime Launch Services (MLS) will go public in Canada through a proposed reverse takeover of Jaguar Financial Corporation (Toronto). MLS is developing Canada’s first commercial orbital satellite launch site. MLS announced this past May that it had received $10.5M in financing led by Power One Capital Markets Limited and Primary Capital. – Space Q


Dr. Jennifer Jakobi has been appointed by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) as the new chairholder of the British Columbia/Yukon region for NSERC's Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering (CWSE) program, replacing outgoing chairholder Dr. Lesley Shannon. CWSE is a regionally-based program whose goal is to increase the participation of women in science and engineering and provide role models for women considering careers in the fields. – NSERC

Rich Foster and Amandeep Kaler have been elected chair and vice-chair, respectively, of the Aerospace Industries Association of Canada following its annual general meeting. Foster is the chief executive and vice president of L3Harris Technologies (Hamilton) while Kaler is the CEO of Avcorp Industries (Delta, BC). Foster succeeds outgoing chair Lee Obst of Collins Aerospace (Ottawa). – AIAC

Luc Paquet has been appointed chief executive officer of Sherbrooke-based Immune Biosolutions following seven-months as its chief corporate development officer while co-founder Dr. Frédéric Leduc has been appointed chief business development officer and will consolidate a new nutraceutical division. The company plans to focus on development of immunotherapies for infectious diseases, inflammation and cancer and recently began a Phase 1 clinical trial for its inhaled COVID-19 antibody therapy in South Africa following a more than $13-million contribution from the Government of Canada‘s Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) to develop and validate its immunotherapy treatment. – Cision

Dr. Kuldeep Neote has been appointed as an executive-in-residence at Toronto-based oncology commercialization investment firm FACIT to help accelerate emerging cancer therapeutics startups in Ontario. Prior to joining FACIT, Neote was vice president of external innovation at Eli Lilly and the senior director of new ventures at Johnson & Johnson Innovation. He began his career as a discovery scientist at Pfizer and earlier in his career cloned one of the first chemokine receptors while at Genentech. – FACIT

Philippe Rambach has been appointed the first Chief AI Officer (CAIO) of energy and automation digital solutions company Schneider Electric (Mississauga) as it establishes a global hub and seeks to advance its artificial intelligence (AI) strategy. Rambach is a graduate of École Polytechnique and joined Schneider Electric in 2010; he will be executing his role from France and reporting to the chief digital officer, Peter Weckesser. – Cision


Other News

Events For Leaders in
Science, Tech, Innovation, and Policy

Discuss and learn from those in the know at our virtual and in-person events.

See Upcoming Events

Don't miss out - start your free trial today.

Start your FREE trial    Already a member? Log in


By using this website, you agree to our use of cookies. We use cookies to provide you with a great experience and to help our website run effectively in accordance with our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.