With 2023 a wrap, CICE is at the crossroads of reflection and anticipation. It was a year where British Columbia faced severe climate impacts, from devastating wildfires to extreme heatwaves that threatened the health, safety, and prosperity of people we love in our communities. These events drive home the urgency to advance innovation like the planet depends on it. Because it does.

With a steadfast commitment to climate resilience, CICE is eager to share some of our pivotal achievements from 2023 and offer a glimpse into what awaits in 2024.

Growing up together  

2023 was the year CICE proved its ability to catalyze early-stage investment – and to match the urgency and efficiency of the innovators we support. We advanced the scale-up of over 30 breakthrough clean energy solutions from BC to the world. And we helped BC Changemakers unlock new pathways to decarbonization – driving good jobs, promoting diversity, and fostering a green economy along the way.

The CICE team refers to 2023 as “the year we became a teenager”, with plans to hit a whole new level of maturity in 2024. We are approaching this year with momentum that is more than a force – it’s a tidal wave of innovation, progress, and unwavering determination to meet net-zero targets.

Celebrating our accomplishments to date

In October 2021, CICE was established by Shell Canada, the BC government, and NRCan as a collaborative bridge between government and industry to expedite the commercialization and adoption of made-in-BC solutions. Our mission: To advance the world towards a net-zero carbon future.

Fast forward to January 2024, and CICE has grown an impressive investment portfolio featuring:

  • Over $22 million invested into 34 BC-based projects as of January 2024, boasting a combined valuation exceeding $141 million. 
  • Investments that are on track to have an annual reduction of 1.74 million metric tons in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Indigenous participation in 28% of 2023 funded companies, emphasizing inclusive collaboration.
  • 64% of funded 2023 projects led by BC-based startups. 
  • 68% of management teams composed of individuals from underrepresented groups including women, Indigenous peoples, and other equity deserving groups.  
“It has been a year of incredible productivity and growth at CICE. 2023 saw triple the number of calls for innovation, adding $19.7 million to the investment portfolio. But beyond these top line numbers, what is truly worth acknowledging and celebrating is the diversity of companies and technologies across our low carbon hydrogen, battery and energy storage, carbon management, and low carbon biofuel focus areas, and the industry partnerships that have been supported. All of this was made possible through the unwavering efforts of our funded innovators and the amazing team at CICE.”

Dan Woynillowicz

Board Chair – BC Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy

Revisiting the highlights of 2023

Topping CICE’s highlight list for 2023 is the allocation of $19.7 million in non-dilutive funding to 23 BC-based innovators. This was made possible through the creation of a unique intelligence framework designed to validate future pathways to net-zero – addressing BC’s toughest decarbonization challenges across industries such as forestry, mining, agriculture, marine, transportation, and technology.

Notable 2023 research that helped inform CICE’s investment thesis for innovation includes:

Converging minds

CICE Converge 2023 also stands out as a milestone achievement, bringing together over 150 innovators, industry leaders, academia, Indigenous partners, investors, community builders, and policy makers to cultivate community connection and celebrate the remarkable BC innovators that are leading the charge for a clean energy future. It’s through the collaboration of this growing climate-first community that we are maturing BC’s clean energy advantages to attract investment and build sustainable economic prosperity for decades to come. We look forward to making CICE Converge 2024 even better!

Giving thanks to our amazing CICE Changemakers

A special call-out goes to all of CICE’s amazing Changemakers and your bold, relentless commitment to climate action, including Anodyne Chemistries, Arca, Atlas Power Technologies Inc., Cascadia Seaweed, Corvus Energy Inc.,  Deadwood Innovations, Ekona Power, FPInnovationsH2 Portable Power Corp, HTEC, Hydra Energy Canada,  Hydron Energy, Illuming Power Inc., Innovatree Carbon GroupInvinity Energy Systems, Lafarge Canada, Lheidli T’enneh First Nation, Mangrove Lithium, Metaspectral, Metro Vancouver, Miraterra, Moment Energy Inc., Parkland Refining BC Ltd.,  Quatern Limited Partnership, Rainhouse Manufacturing Canada Ltd., and Takachar.

Thank you for continuing to push the forefront of clean energy innovation. Let’s keep reaching for that ‘2030’ brass ring.

“Communities scale companies, and together we are shaping BC’s future. CICE Changemakers play a vital role in delivering some of the smartest and most impactful ways to advance decarbonization. We will continue to support these BC companies through our unique offering of intelligent validation of industry decarbonization pathways, strategic alignment and facilitation between government and industry, and ability to fund faster than traditional VC funds and government programs so they can scale rapidly, create good jobs, drive diversity, build IP, and attract investment to increase global competitiveness and drive a sustainable green economy for decades to come.”

Todd Sayers

Chief Operating Officer – BC Centre for Innovation and Clean Energy

Building momentum for 2024 and beyond

As CICE steps into 2024, the journey continues with the announcement of its January Call for Innovation and a new funding avenue for emerging BC-based ventures from universities like SFU, UNBC, UBCO, UBC, and UVIC.

We are ready to light up the year by continuing to fast-track BC’s breakthrough innovations and build strong climate-first partnerships that are critical to unlocking investment capital and accelerating the market adoption needed to meet net-zero goals. Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous 2024!


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