Biomass North cancels 2019 forum citing ‘political uncertainty’
By Maria Church
The upcoming Biomass North Forum 2019 in Ottawa that aimed to connect Canada’s bioeconomy has been cancelled due to “political uncertainty.”
In a candid statement on Biomass North Development Centre‘s website, executive director Dawn Lambe said the decision to cancel the event was tough, but necessary.
“With the political uncertainty of the pre-writ period federally, we could not get concrete confirmation about the attendance of key political and administrative staff,” she said.
The uncertainty is stemming from recent or upcoming provincial and territorial elections, the federal election taking place Oct. 21, and an “adversarial relationship between some of our provinces and the current federal government in regards to addressing climate change and transitioning to a low carbon economy,” Lambe said.
Without those government stakeholders, Lambe said the event – scheduled for September 17-19 in Ottawa – would not give the value attendees deserve.
“While it was the best decision we could make given the circumstances, we regret not being able to move the sector forward by hosting our annual event. We will be refunding all paid registrants the cost of their tickets,” she said.
WBA branch office opening delayed
The event cancellation has also meant the delay of the World Bioenergy Association’s (WBA) Canadian branch opening, which was planned in tandem with the Biomass North Forum.
In a statement, the WBA said the opening has been postponed indefinitely.
“The agreement to be signed at the Biomass North Forum 2019 was aimed at promoting development and deployment of bioenergy in Canada and strengthen our connection with Canadian bioenergy stakeholders,” the association states. “We hope for establishing stronger connection with local Canadian bioenergy stakeholders in the near future.”