British Columbia can lead the rapid advancement of innovative solutions to destructive wildfires

VANCOUVER, B.C., May 16, 2024 – On May 30th, 2024, the B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy (CICE) is launching Canada’s first call for innovation focused on wildfire technologies. Up to $3 million in non-dilutive investment will be awarded to innovators across British Columbia that are commercializing technology in the following areas to advance wildfire management solutions at scale: 

  • Prevention solutions: Predictive modelling tools, proactive land management practices, and fire-resistant materials 
  • Mitigation technologies: Early wildfire detection systems, communication and information technologies, firefighting technologies, spread halting, sustainable fire retardants, and the development of specialized equipment 
  • Adaptation innovations: Solutions to increase forest and community resiliency, post-fire recovery, and business model innovations to integrate climate change adaptation strategies into land/vegetation management practices 
“The BC Wildfire Service is committed to research and innovation within all phases of emergency management. Innovation is essential as fire seasons become longer and more intense. We look forward to what BC innovators have to offer.” 

Aaron Pawlick

Manager of Strategic Initiatives and Innovation – BC Wildfire Service

With wildfire frequency, size and intensity growing annually, effective wildfire management is imperative. Canada’s forests store 30-40% of the world’s land-based carbon, playing a critical role in carbon sequestration and climate mitigation. In 2023, 18.4 million hectares of the country’s forests burned, exceeding the 10-year average by 6.5 times. These wildfires emitted 2.3 gigatonnes (Gt) of carbon dioxide, over three times the total emissions from Canada’s economy.  

“In Canada and globally, surges in destructive wildfires are fueling global emissions and threatening the safety, well-being, and prosperity of communities. Just this week, thousands evacuated their homes across multiple provinces, underscoring the mounting risk faced by Canadians as wildfires intensify. That said, Canada’s extensive experience in combatting some of the most severe wildfires on the planet also uniquely positions it to lead in finding solutions. By drawing upon our hard-earned insights, we can integrate our expertise in clean technology with our knowledge of wildfire and land management to deliver the solutions the world urgently needs, addressing growing global demand for wildfire technology innovations.” 

Sarah Goodman

Chief Executive Officer at the B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy

Applications for the wildfire technology innovation call will be accepted from May 30th (9am PT) to August 7th, 2024 (5pm PT). CICE will prioritize solutions that have significant co-benefits such as integrating carbon sequestration and removal initiatives, promoting ecosystem restoration and biodiversity conservation, empowering Indigenous fire stewardship practices, and enhancing community resilience and socio-economic benefits through wildfire management efforts.  

For inquiries related to the call for wildfire technology innovation, download the Wildfire Tech Applicant Guide, or contact CICE at wildfiretech2024@cice.ca. CICE is also hosting a Q&A webinar on Thursday, May 30th at 10am PT.

REGISTER HERE 

About CICE 

The B.C. Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy (CICE) is an independent, not-for-profit corporation that provides early-stage investment to fast-track the commercialization of British Columbia’s most impactful clean energy and climate solutions – from Canada to the world. We match the urgency and efficiency of the companies we support, driving innovation like the planet depends on it. Because it does. Together with our climate-first community of innovators, industry leaders, investors, academia, government, and Indigenous partners, we advance future pathways to net zero – leveraging B.C.’s clean energy advantages to attract investment, create good jobs, and build a prosperous, clean economy for decades to come. www.cice.ca  

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