First Regional Energy and Resource Table Collaboration Framework For Accelerating a Low-Carbon Economy Released: 

Backgrounder

The Collaboration Framework identifies six opportunity areas that have the potential to contribute significantly to building or expanding British Columbia’s competitive advantage. Below is a list of those opportunity areas, with actions the governments will advance in order to seize them:

  • Critical Minerals

    • Unearth geoscience potential

    • Assess and maximize value chain

    • Pursue opportunities in the circular economy

  • Electrification

    • Advance priority transmission projects to support electrification

    • Enhance energy efficiency programs

    • Accelerate clean transportation goals

  • Clean Fuels/Hydrogen

    • Enable foundations for clean fuels competitiveness

    • Develop the hydrogen economy and support the entire hydrogen value chain

    • Advance bioenergy and synthetic energy 

  • Forest Sector

    • Grow the production and export of high-value forest products

    • Support markets that use forest harvest and processing residues, and improve resources utilization for British Columbia commercial harvest

    • Increase Indigenous access to training and participation in the forest sector and create opportunities for shared decision-making between federal and provincial governments and First Nations partners

    • Accelerate the deployment of opportunities for the forest sector to contribute to Canada’s net-zero goals

  • Carbon Management Technology and Systems

    • Advance the development of a provincial carbon management approach

    • Address knowledge gaps and enable and incentivize the development and deployment of carbon management systems

  • Regulatory Efficiency

    • Support engagement between Indigenous rights-holders, Canada, British Columbia, and key industry to align expectations and opportunities, as well as test innovative approaches to improve the efficiency of the regulatory and permitting system

To support advancing British Columbia’s (B.C.) opportunity areas, the Collaboration Framework is accompanied by the following federal and provincial investments from related programs:

  • Canada and B.C. will commit to work together with First Nations to advance large-scale clean fuels projects needed to anchor the sector, decarbonize large industry and bring extensive global major project experience to B.C. to kick-start hydrogen hubs.

  • Canada and B.C. have also agreed to:

    • work with First Nations, and with the participation of industry, on an approach to accelerate the regulatory and permitting processes for clean growth projects in a manner consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act;

    • advance intra-provincial clean electricity infrastructure with a particular focus on the North Coast; and

    • advance the Equal by 30 campaign, which B.C. has committed to join.

  • New investments to support B.C.’s ongoing efforts to seize its comparative advantages and be a global leader in clean fuels such as hydrogen. These include an intention to invest up to $53.7 million from Natural Resources Canada’s (NRCan) Clean Fuels Fund (CFF) to support production projects and feasibility studies related to hydrogen and other clean fuels in B.C., subject to the negotiation of individual contribution agreements. The CFF offers a unique opportunity for Indigenous businesses and communities, and Indigenous participation is encouraged.

  • $14.4 million for Andion and Semiahmoo First Nation’s Renewable Natural Gas Facility.

  • $10.8 million for HTEC Hydrogen Technology & Energy Corporation’s HyPulp Project. 

  • $10.5 million for EverGen Infrastructure Corp.’s Pacific Coast Renewables RNG Expansion Project. 

  • $5 million for Kootenays Hydrogen Limited Partnership’s Kootenays Hydrogen Project.

  • $5 million for Canada Fortescue Future Industries Ltd.’s feasibility study on the construction of a green hydrogen project in the Prince George region.

  • $5 million for Azure Sustainable Fuels Corp’s FEED for renewable fuels project.

  • $1.4 million for CHAR Biocarbon Inc.’s feasibility study on RNG and Biocarbon Production via High Temperature Pyrolysis.

  • $1.2 million for FortisBC Energy Inc.’s hydrogen blending feasibility studies.

  • $377,000 for West Moberly Green Hydrogen Ventures Ltd.’s feasibility study to advance a major hydrogen production facility. This project will convert locally abundant solar power to green hydrogen for direct blending to the gas grid and is an Indigenous-owned project in partnership with W Dusk Energy Group.

  • $15 million from the Strategic Innovation Fund, for AVL Fuel Cell Canada Inc. to support the development of a centre and a portfolio of innovative hydrogen fuel cell technologies and world-class engineering solutions for customers in the transportation sector globally.

  • Confirmed eligibility of B.C.’s CO2 geological storage regime under the federal carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) investment tax credit, which could support CCUS projects in the province.

  • To improve the efficiency of the regulatory and permitting system, Canada, British Columbia and First Nations partners will engage collaboratively to discuss, identify and advance innovations in regulatory and permitting processes that could result in faster decisions aligned with our common clean growth objectives. The partners will be working to identify one or more projects to ground truth the effectiveness of these innovations at clarifying and reducing timelines, mitigating inefficiencies and improving engagement and partnerships. 

  • Over $2.3 million to the University of British Columbia to upgrade its mining lab. Through this project, industry partners will be able to use the lab’s new state-of-the-art equipment to access high-precision data. Canada is a major producer of critical minerals, which are essential inputs for the development of clean energy technologies such as electric vehicles that support Canada’s transition to a low-carbon economy. This will help them find new critical mineral resources while ensuring extraction of these minerals is conducted sustainably.

  • $710,775 contribution from NRCan’s Indigenous Natural Resource Partnerships (INRP) program to the B.C. First Nations Energy and Mining Council to undertake activities, with supporting education materials and training, to increase Indigenous communities’ knowledge and their participation in the natural resource economy with a focus on critical minerals.

  • Over $10.8 million to support capacity building, demonstration projects and feasibility studies in rural, remote and Indigenous communities in B.C. through NRCan's Clean Energy for Rural and Remote Communities program, a $220-million program that strives to reduce reliance on diesel in rural and remote communities by deploying and demonstrating renewable energy projects, encouraging energy efficiency and building local skills and capacity.

    • $4.9 million for Hesquiaht First Nation’s hydropower project.

    • $3.7 million for Great Bear Initiatives two capacity-building projects.

    • $1 million for Uchucklesaht Tribe Government’s hydro feasibility study.

    • $322,150 for Clean Energy Association of British Columbia’s capacity-building project. 

    • $309,047 for Dzawada’enuxw First Nation’s capacity-building project.

    • $242,800 for EcoSmart Foundation Inc.’s capacity-building project.

    • $187,488 for Tla'amin Nation’s bioheat feasibility study.

    • $94,143 for Toosey Indian Band’s bioheat feasibility study.

    • $57,800 for Wuikinuxv First Nation bioheat feasibility study.

  • B.C. is moving forward with a call for new sources of renewable, emissions-free electricity to power British Columbia’s growing clean economy and is providing $140 million to the B.C Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative to support Indigenous-led power projects, create economic opportunities for First Nations and advance community self-determination.

  • Investments to support British Columbia’s ongoing efforts to be a leader in sustainable forest management, with funding of over $12.3 million for projects that will ensure the forest sector is economically competitive and environmentally sustainable, while supporting research and development activities in the forest sector and encouraging a greater use of wood in non-traditional construction. These investments will also help to increase the participation of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada's forest sector and improve economic outcomes for Indigenous Peoples throughout Canada.

    • $9 million from NRCan’s Investments in Forest Industry Transformation program and B.C.’s CleanBC Building Innovation Fund, for Kalesnikoff Mass Timber Inc.’s project to design and install a multi-function robotic processing line. The project revolves around a robotic multi-function processing line that will produce high-performance mass timber panels with superior performance and moisture-resisting properties.

    • $1.6 million to FPInnovations to deliver a project to help Indigenous communities become part of B.C.’s forest bioeconomy by harvesting non-timber forest products. The forest bioeconomy uses sustainably managed forest material (forest biomass) to make bioproducts like consumer goods and industrial products. Through the Indigenous Innovative Bioeconomy Demonstration Project, Indigenous communities will increase energy resilience by harnessing energy from forest biomass and explore opportunities to generate revenue through GHG emission savings and carbon sequestration. 

    • $1.3 million to identify the most suitable pathway to de-risk fuel switching processes in large-scale lime kilns in Canadian kraft mills. Directed project via the Forest Innovation Program and FPInnovations.

    • $460,604 from the INRP program, to the B.C. First Nations Forestry Council, to develop and facilitate a series of three-day, online and in-person First Nations forestry basics courses followed by a career fair in four regions throughout the province of B.C.

  • Canada’s and B.C.’s commitment to partner on intra-provincial electricity infrastructure, working with Indigenous Nations to power low-carbon economic development with clean electricity instead of fossil fuels, with a particular focus on the North Coast and, assessing options for financial support, encouraging Indigenous partnership and streamlining the regulatory and permitting processes.

  • Over $6.7 million from NRCan’s Smart Renewables and Electrification Pathways (SREPs) program to support clean energy projects and critical regional priorities, including capacity building, and feasibility studies to support Indigenous communities by building knowledge and skills related to renewable energy and grid modernization technologies. These projects will enable Indigenous communities to participate in the Canadian electricity sector as well as the transition to low carbon.

    • $2.4 million for Dease River Development Corporation to support community engagement, capacity building, permitting, final design and business case development for the run-of-river hydropower project on Troutline Creek in B.C. that will supply the communities of Good Hope Lake and Jade City with clean and renewable electricity.

    • $2 million for Daylu Dena Council to investigate the geothermal energy resource potential within their traditional territory, increasing collective understanding of this geologically and structurally complex region and building internal capacity within the community to participate in geothermal energy development in the region.

    • $2 million for NeToo FN GP Inc. to support the engineering, planning, studies and permitting for a proposed 49-MW hydroelectric facility on the existing Kenney Dam with support from the First Nations Major Projects Coalition.

    • $174,243 for Tsleil-Waututh Nation to develop a Community Energy Plan that will provide guidance, in a coordinated and inclusive way, to take care of and retrofit existing housing stock while at the same time looking for opportunities to explore and expand renewable energy systems in the community.

    • $130,000 for Bridge River Indian Band (Xwísten) to advance a community-wide demand-side management program, through their innovative Xwísten Energizer Movement to all households, which is designed to encourage members to learn about the importance of energy conservation and efficiency in their daily lives while supporting the reduction of their household energy costs, energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions.

    • $10,000 for Musqueam Indian Band to raise awareness in its community about heat pumps, electric vehicles and solar PV systems through an information event on how these technologies work, their cost-effectiveness and maintenance requirements, available rebates and incentives, contractors and installation, and environmental benefits.

  • B.C.'s support for inclusive economic growth and commitment to joining the Equal by 30 campaign, an international initiative, which works to accelerate gender equality and diversity in clean energy sectors and close the gender gap by 2030.

  • New measures announced in the Government of Canada’s Budget 2023 that can help support future clean energy projects in B.C. include:

  • $3 billion over 13 years for NRCan for the recapitalization of the SREPs program to renew the Smart Grid program and to support Canadian offshore wind power. The recapitalization of SREPs, which would be in addition to the $1.56-billion current budget, will be used to continue to support clean energy projects and critical regional priorities.

  • $8.7 million to support engagement with Indigenous communities, partners and organizations on the development of a National Benefits Sharing Framework. Engagements will begin in fall 2023, building on targeted discussions held with Indigenous leaders, industry and provincial and territorial governments in 2022. Furthermore, Natural Resources Canada is exploring options for providing access to capital to support Indigenous investments in major resource projects.

  • The Clean Hydrogen Investment Tax Credit, a refundable tax credit that will offer tax incentives for hydrogen production, with credits ranging from 15 to 40 percent based on the life-cycle carbon intensity of the hydrogen.

  • $368.4 million over three years to renew and update NRCan forest sector program support, including for research and development, Indigenous and international leadership, and data. The Canadian Forest Service is working quickly to open new Expressions of Interest and funding opportunities for these programs, which should be ready to launch as early as summer 2023.

More information about the Regional Energy and Resource Tables and the B.C. Regional Energy and Resource Table Framework for Collaboration on the Path to Net Zero is available on the NRCan website.

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