As part of our ongoing service to the CleanTech North community, we have advised the Federal and Provincial governments on how best to support cleantech innovation and adoption. 2017 looks to be a landmark year, with:
- Both CleanTech North and our members testifying to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Natural Resources,
- Natural Resources Canada’s Parliamentary Secretary, MP Kim Rudd, chairing a revealing roundtable discussion at our first showcase event of this year,
- A Federal budgetary focus on clean technology, and, last but not least,
- Paul Connor joining CleanTech North as Director of Operations.
With all this happening in just the first quarter, we cannot help but think 2017 will be “The Year of CleanTech”. Please join us in celebrating the advances our sector has made throughout this year.
Continue reading below for more details of our recent activities and highlights from the 2017 Federal budget.
Testifying to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee
CleanTech North, and our members, have been actively providing input to the Federal government on how best to support the cleantech companies across Canada. During the first quarter of 2017, both Bryan Watson, Managing Director of CleanTech North and Gordon Fraser, CEO of Responsible Energy Inc. appeared as an expert witnesses before The House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Natural Resources (RNNR) as part of its study on Clean Technology in Canada’s Natural Resources Sectors.
For details of the testimony provided, please refer to the following:
- Bryan Watson’s Testimony (http://www NULL.parl NULL.gc NULL.ca/HousePublications/Publication NULL.aspx?Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=42&Ses=1&DocId=8799638)
- Gordon Fraser’s Testimony (link pending)
The categories of CleanTech North’s recommendations included:
- Financial de-risking, including access to capital, specifically:
- An investment tax credit (VC, Angel) as in BC or MB.
- Leveraging SR& ED tax credits to induce more investment into early-stage cleantech firms
- Co-investment funds, which FedDev Ontario’s Investing in Business Innovation is akin to
- Industry receptor capacity development
- Something like the U.S. Department of Energy’s small business vouchers pilot program to de-risk cleantech adoption
- A version of NRC-IRAP’s digital technology adoption pilot program but for cleantech
- Technological de-risking
- Providing existing funding for cleantech at the speed of business and through local convenors of end-user consortia
- Ecosystem navigation and support
- Set up a strong cross-sector community of interest and a concierge service to support cleantech firms navigating towards end-users, investors & government agencies
Gordon Fraser’s recommendations included:
- Placing responsibility for protecting environment on each industry, so they are incented to invest in cleantech.
- Offering a reduction in carbon tax payable, or a tax credit against cleantech investment, with the condition that such cleantech has been previously vetted in the process of gaining government support.
- Incenting private-sector investment in cleantech firms themselves, with understandable rules for flow-through shares or with increased capital-gains exemptions.
- Following the NRC-IRAP model, and stay on the idea side, accepting that some businesses will not succeed but some will.