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Ontario supports local Carbon XPRIZE teams

June 21, 2016 – Ontario is making up to $2.5 million available to local teams competing the NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE challenge to address climate change.


June 21, 2016
By Brandi Cowen

As part of Ontario Centres of Excellence’s (OCE’s) $74 million TargetGHG cleantech innovation initiative, funding will be made available to Ontario teams for the development and demonstration of their concept through the three stages of the Carbon XPRIZE competition.

The contest, which incentivizes innovators to convert carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from power plants and industrial facilities into valuable every day products, began in September 2015 and ends in March 2020.

To qualify, teams must be registered by July 15. The exact amount of OCE funding per team will depend on how many Ontario teams advance and how far they get in the competition. The OCE funding also requires matching contributions secured by teams themselves.

“We know that there is some inspired thinking in Ontario when it comes to the business opportunities fighting climate change and cutting greenhouse gas emissions present,” said Dr. Tom Corr, president and CEO of OCE. “Our support for the Ontario competitors will not only help them win the Carbon XPRIZE, it means that their concepts will get vital infusions of capital at the most important phases of development and testing. In the long run, we will be supporting the development of technologies and products that will help in the fight against climate change while boosting Ontario’s economic prosperity through the creation of high quality jobs.”

OCE has a longstanding history in cleantech, having supported many hundreds of cleantech-related companies. Over the past two years, OCE has supported 243 clean-tech related projects leading to the creation and retention of close to 900 jobs.

The NRG COSIA Carbon XPRIZE will incentivize development of new and emerging CO2 conversion technologies, accelerating these breakthroughs from laboratory testing to demonstration under real world conditions. The prize will help identify the most promising pathways for CO2 conversion and prove the technologies can be deployed at power plants and other industrial facilities. There are two tracks to the competition: one focused on testing technologies at a coal power plant and one focused on testing technologies at a natural gas power plant. One winner from each track will receive a top prize of $7.5 million US.

“With the deadline for team submissions fast-approaching, we hope OCE’s commitment encourages Ontario-based teams to compete,” said Paul Bunje, principal and senior scientist of energy and environment at XPRIZE. “These competitors are aiming to make history with breakthrough technologies. We know the world will see powerful new market-based solutions to climate change because of OCE’s support of new cleantech innovations.”