The Canadian government is accepting proposals from industry and academia for projects to establish biomass supply chains across the country as part of the $1.5 billion Clean Fuels Fund Program.
The program will set $30.4 million to support technologically ready projects and feasibility studies that will contribute to establishing a biomass supply chain. Each project can receive up to 50 per cent of eligible costs to a maximum of $5 million in funding.
The aim is to build biomass hubs to help fuel producers have a “reliable and timely supply of raw materials or feedstock in close proximity to clean fuel production facilities.”
Examples of biomass supply chain infrastructure include biomass sorters, collectors or dryers used to remove moisture from feedstocks.
In an email exchange with SustainableBiz, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) said eligible projects can be either capital projects or feasibility studies. A capital project would help “establish biomass supply chains that are able to aggregate, process, handle and store a range of biomass feedstocks from various locations and sources in a cost-effective manner and environmentally sustainable manner to facilitate their availability and use in the production of clean fuel.” A feasibility study would encompass front-end engineering and design (FEED) studies and basic engineering studies.
Organic materials are processed for the collection, supply and distribution of biomass materials as a feedstock in downstream clean fuel production facilities. The biomass materials can also be converted into other fuels like renewable natural gas.
There will also be resources to “address gaps and misalignment in codes, standards and regulations related to the production, distribution and end-use of clean fuels.”
The funding is divided between a ‘Non-Indigenous Projects Stream,’ a ‘Meaningful Indigenous-owned Projects Stream’ and ‘Majority Indigenous-led Projects Stream.’
Valid applicants for the Non-Indigenous Projects Stream include but are not limited to: electricity or gas utilities, private sector companies, industry associations, research associations, Canadian academic institutions and provincial, territorial, regional or municipal governments.
For Meaningful and Majority Indigenous-owned Projects streams, valid applicants include: Indigenous communities and businesses, electricity or gas utilities, private sector companies, industry associations, research associations and academic institutions.
The deadline for applications is Nov. 23, 2022 for non-Indigenous applicants. Indigenous applications will be accepted until the notional funding allocation is no longer available. All projects and feasibility studies will need to be completed by Mar. 31, 2026.
NRCan said the funding may directly support around 36,000 construction, engineering and associated plant operation jobs by 2030, as well as indirect employment in communities where the projects will happen.
The call for proposals aligns with the Canadian government’s plan to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 40 to 50 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 and reach net-zero by 2050.
NRCan said clean fuels can reduce up to 20 megatonnes of Canada’s GHG emissions by 2030. It projects that about half of Canada’s energy demand could be met by clean fuels in 2050.