Several bio-based technologies shortlisted in Ontario’s Solutions 2030 Challenge

December 27, 2017 |

In Canada, Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE) announced the 20 semi-finalists for Ontario’s Solutions 2030 Challenge – a global call for innovators to propose solutions to help Ontario industry reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution.

The initiative is part of the broader TargetGHG program, which is delivered by OCE on behalf of the Ministry of Research, Innovation and Science and the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.

A three-phase competition over three years, Ontario’s Solutions 2030 Challenge is designed to identify and accelerate the development of technologies that have a high potential to help Ontario industry meet 2030 emissions reduction targets. The 20 teams were selected from over 160 applicants from around the world, and each of the semi-finalists has accepted an invitation to pitch to an external panel.

The top eight teams from Phase 1 will be invited to participate in Phase 2 and will be awarded up to C$250,000 per team to support costs related to their participation.

With up to C$7 million in funding, including up to $3 million in support for the winning team to bring their transformative technology to market, the challenge asks teams and industry to collaborate and envision a path forward to tackle climate change in Ontario and around the world.

Bio-based semi-finalists include:

Capital Carbon Solutions – Canada 

The Capital Carbon Solutions Team is developing a technology to utilize membranes to capture CO2 from flue gas, convert it to fuels and chemicals using a reverse water-gas shift reaction, and hydrogenate it to hydrocarbons using a Fisher-Tropsch synthesis.  The proposed project would allow the team to integrate the required technologies and test the proposed system.

CERT – Canada 

Ted Sargent, a professor at University of Toronto, leads a team of researchers in the development of transformative technologies for energy and greenhouse gas management.  Their project proposes to convert CO2 to ethanol utilizing an electrocatalytic process.

CO2 Solutions – Canada 

CO2 Solutions Inc. is a Quebec-based company developing a novel bio-catalyst technology for the capture and purification of CO2 from industrial sources of emissions.  The proposed 2030 Challenge project would develop a mobile prototype that could be moved and operated at an industrial site for evaluation of large-scale project feasibility.

Opus 12 – United States 

Opus 12 is a start-up founded by a team of entrepreneurs from Stanford University in California.  They have developed a CO2 electrolysis technology that converts CO2 into carbon-based products, such as syngas, ethylene, methane, or ethanol depending on the catalyst being used.  The proposed project would be the development of a commercial prototype system. The company has validated the technology and has attracted the attention of major energy companies. The founding team was recently featured in Rolling Stone’s list of 25 People Shaping the Future.  h

Shepherdess Biotech – Canada 

The Shepherdess Biotech team is developing a production pathway for biofuel from industrial waste.  They have partnered with Ontario start-up Pond Technologies to convert the algae product from their photobioreactors into usable fuels including butanol.  The team and technology are based at Ryerson University.

Catalytic Innovations – United States

Catalytic Innovations was founded by scientists from Yale University.  The company, now based in Boston, has developed a non-biological, electrically-driven reactor for the production of ethanol from CO2.  The proposed project would allow the team to scale up their technology and develop a pilot in Ontario.

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Category: Research

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