Minister Vandal announces federal investment to advance Alberta’s hydrogen economy

News release

 $9.7 million to advance Alberta's hydrogen economy

Funding of more than $9.74 million through PrairiesCan will support more than 1,600 jobs and ensure Alberta continues to be a global leader and great place to invest in the rapidly growing hydrogen sector

January 17, 2023– Edmonton, Alberta – PrairiesCan

Alberta’s access to low-cost natural gas reserves and a capable workforce skilled in the natural resource sector provide the province with a competitive advantage to benefit both economically and environmentally from the rapidly growing hydrogen industry. All Canadians will benefit as the province seizes this opportunity, with support from the Government of Canada through strategic investments to advance Alberta’s hydrogen industry.

Today, the Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan, together with the Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister for Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance, announced a federal investment of more than $9.74 million to improve access to hydrogen fuels, support product testing, attract investment to Alberta’s hydrogen industry, and increase the availability of quality training opportunities to commercialize new technologies all while supporting good-paying jobs Alberta workers can rely on.

Strengthening the hydrogen supply chain and increasing investment in the Edmonton region

Edmonton Global is receiving a total of $3,744,000 for two projects to strengthen the regional hydrogen supply chain and expand investment initiatives to grow the Edmonton regional economy.

  • An investment of $3 million will help increase the scale and scope of foreign direct investment initiatives that target specific subsectors such as hydrogen. Funding enables Edmonton Global to host international events, including the 2023 Canadian Hydrogen Convention; expand international promotion of the Edmonton region; and develop new tools and materials for potential investors.
  • In addition, $744,000 will enable Edmonton Global to develop the Edmonton region’s hydrogen supply chain and labour market. It will help create an online database of regional small- and medium-sized businesses with capacity to move into the hydrogen supply chain, workshops focused on advancing the hydrogen economy, and engagement with businesses and post-secondary institutions to compile a hydrogen labour market assessment that will identify skills and training needs.

Increasing access to hydrogen refueling equipment and facilities

The Alberta Motor Transport Association and the University of Alberta are receiving $3 million to increase access to hydrogen fuel and showcase the benefits of hydrogen technology for heavy vehicles.

  • This initiative will encourage the adoption of hydrogen fuel by Alberta’s heavy vehicle sector—including freight trucks, municipal buses and heavy equipment—by supporting product testing to demonstrate the real-world capabilities of hydrogen powered heavy vehicles.
  • Key activities include acquiring hydrogen fuelling equipment in Calgary and Edmonton to carry out pilot projects involving hydrogen fuel for trucks, buses and heavy equipment; providing fleet operators the opportunity to trial the use of hydrogen fuel; an educational and public awareness tour to engage industry; and the commissioning of a pilot hydrogen fuelling station in Calgary.

Upgrading testing facilities for hydrogen fuel infrastructure

Edmonton’s C-FER Technologies is also receiving $3 million to upgrade its testing facility for hydrogen fuel infrastructure, equipment and technologies.

  • Working with technology providers and end users, C-FER will conduct a testing program to ensure the safe, efficient and reliable performance of hydrogen transportation and storage infrastructure.  
  • This is a key component of the Alberta Innovates' Hydrogen Centre of Excellence, a $50 million initiative to accelerate hydrogen sector development in Alberta.

Federal funding announced today is provided through the Regional Innovation Ecosystems program, administered by PrairiesCan in the Prairie Provinces. Through this program, PrairiesCan makes targeted investments to support businesses in priority sectors to innovate, grow and compete globally. 


“Albertans are leading the way in hydrogen technology and we are working with industry and government partners to realize that potential. Today’s investment is all about building Canadian expertise throughout the entire value chain to develop new hydrogen supply, distribution and end uses that will support a green economy, a low-carbon energy ecosystem and create and sustain good-paying jobs for Alberta workers.”
–The Honourable Dan Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan

“The Edmonton region is Canada’s hydrogen leader, and we have the natural resources and skilled workforce here to drive the emerging hydrogen economy. Today’s investments are another step on our journey to net zero emissions; supporting a healthy environment and a healthy economy while creating good paying jobs for Albertans.”
–The Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance

“Alberta has the potential to become a clean hydrogen superpower. These investments, which are supported by more than $3 million in funding from the Government of Alberta, will help support the increased use of hydrogen technology in the years ahead. As the largest hydrogen producer in Canada, we are ready to do our part to help meet demand within Canada and around the world.”
–The Honourable Dale Nally, Minister of Service Alberta and Red Tape Reduction, Government of Alberta

"Acceleration of the hydrogen economy is a key pillar of the Edmonton region's low carbon economic development strategy. I am very grateful for the integrated investment that PrairiesCan is providing in an effort to advance our market demand, supply chain development, ecosystem capacity building and innovation in hydrogen fuel infrastructure and technologies. These investments will further elevate and strengthen Edmonton region's position to be a global hydrogen hub."
–Mayor Amarjeet Sohi, City of Edmonton

“The global race is on to adopt hydrogen technologies - countries around the world are positioning to become tomorrow’s hydrogen superpowers. We need to move aggressively to take advantage of this opportunity for Canada and are working with our partners to establish the Edmonton Metropolitan Region and Canada as a world leader in clean hydrogen. With support from stakeholders like PrairiesCan, we are making that vision a reality.”
–Enzo Barichello, Board Chair, Edmonton Global

“With the right resources and expertise, Alberta is well-positioned to become a global hydrogen leader. This investment will harness these assets so we can transition the commercial transportation sector to this low-carbon fuel. AMTA can’t wait to help drive the future.”
–Doug Paisley, Board Chair, Alberta Motor Transport Association

“Hydrogen is fast becoming a critical part of the world’s energy mix. Alberta has both the natural resources and the skilled people to be a world leader in next generation energies. The investment, from PrairiesCan to our subsidiary, C-FER Technologies, will lead to innovations that make transportation and storage of hydrogen safe, efficient and reliable.”
–Laura Kilcrease, CEO, Alberta Innovates

Quick facts

  • The global market for hydrogen as a fuel is expected to be over $11 trillion by 2050, and Canada’s share of the global market for hydrogen is estimated to be up to $50 billion per year.

  • Through the Hydrogen Strategy for Canada, the Government of Canada has set a target of creating 350,000 hydrogen sector jobs across Canada by 2050.

  • Canada is a top hydrogen producer, generating $200 million in hydrogen technology exports (e.g. fuel cells), and employing more than 2,000 Canadians in this industry.

  • Low-carbon and zero-emission hydrogen can reduce our annual greenhouse gas emissions by up to 45 million metric tonnes a year by 2030.

  • PrairiesCan funding is being provided through the Regional Innovation Ecosystem program, which aims to create, grow and nurture inclusive regional ecosystems that support business needs.

Associated links


Kyle Allen
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Minister of Northern Affairs, Minister responsible for Prairies Economic Development Canada, and Minister responsible for the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Rohit Sandhu
Communications Manager
Prairies Economic Development Canada

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