A mine in the Northwest Territories, set to start Canada’s first production of rare earth concentrate in July in Saskatchewan, will build a rare earths processing facility in Saskatoon, as the public and private sectors ramp up efforts to make Canada a supplier of choice for strategic critical minerals.
Organization: Government of Alberta
Alberta Innovates has launched a new program called Accelerating Innovations into CarE (AICE)-Concepts that provides funding to help early-stage entrepreneurs commercialize digital health technologies.
Canada’s three research funding agencies have launched the Tri-agency Interdisciplinary Peer Review Committee; Alberta creates a platform to boost clinical trials; Ontario Tech University is designated a collaboration centre by the UN International Atomic Energy Agency, and more.
Federal, Alberta and municipal governments are jointly providing $2.25 million to launch Canada’s first industrial hydrogen hub in the Edmonton region. Initial funding for the hub is seen as the first step in creating what Ottawa envisions will be a $50-billion Canadian clean hydrogen sector.
In this week’s The Short Report, the Government of Alberta contributes $20 million for vaccine R&D, a Canadian Infrastructure Bank invests in Ontario’s energy grid, 5G wireless tech to increase safety and reliability in the mining industry, Palette Skills leads consortium to address talent gaps in a post-COVID economy, and more.
Performance-based funding proposed by some provinces for post-secondary institutions uses flawed indicators and hasn’t worked in other jurisdictions, Dr. Marc Spooner, PhD, professor of educational psychology at the University of Regina, says in an op-ed. “How governments can, in good conscience, ignore the damage these models have caused in other jurisdictions where they have been unsuccessfully implemented is difficult to understand.”
A pan-Canadian oil and natural gas innovation network has yet to spend the bulk of $100 million of federal funding on commercializing new, cleaner technologies, two years after Ottawa announced the funding and seven months after a contribution agreement was signed. The Clean Resource Innovation Network, which aims to produce the world’s cleanest hydrocarbons, plans to announce details of its planned three technology competitions by end of March 2021.
Building a circular economy for plastics in Canada will take smart solutions, says Christina Seidel, executive director of the Recycling Council of Alberta and co-chair of the Plastics Alliance of Alberta, in an op-ed. These include locally driven initiatives, collaboration across sectors and organizations, research investment and innovation to eliminate unnecessary plastics and reduce plastic waste.
The NGen supercluster has awarded $27 million in funding for 12 advanced manufacturing projects that can supply critical health care products to combat COVID-19. The funding includes $5 million for Providence Therapeutics and partner Northern RNA to establish manufacturing capacity in Calgary for Providence’s made-in-Canada vaccine.
A consortium of some of Canada’s biggest corporations launch a pilot project offering workers rapid COVID-19 testing; Conestoga College prepares to launch a national institute dedicated to senior care; Lakeland College offers Canada’s first two-year Agricultural Technology program this fall, and more.