Alberta announces $58 million for circular economy projects worth $528 million in public and private investment

EDMONTON, AB – The Government of Alberta is advancing the province’s global leadership in the circular economy by committing $58 million through Emissions Reduction Alberta (ERA) to projects across the province worth $528 million. All funding is sourced from the province’s Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) fund.

Producing high-quality fertilizer for farmers, recycling asphalt from roof shingles, sequestering carbon in concrete, and novel plastics recycling are some examples of the technology solutions receiving funding through ERA’s Circular Economy Challenge.

If successful, these projects will result in cumulative greenhouse gas (GHG) reductions of up to 4 million tonnes by 2050—equal to offsetting the GHG footprint of 1 million homes. Circular Economy Challenge funding is expected to create 1835 person-year jobs* in Alberta and have a $350 million GDP impact in the province by 2025.

The investment aligns with provincial initiatives including the proposed Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) approach, the agricultural plastics recycling initiative, and the Natural Gas Vision and Strategy’s goal to establish Alberta as a centre of excellence for plastics diversion and recycling.

“Advancing technology solutions that support a circular economy makes good environmental and economic sense. Circular Economy Challenge projects supported by the TIER fund will help keep valuable materials in the economy and out of landfills, which drives investment, bolsters economic activity, cuts emissions, and creates jobs. It’s a win across the board.”

Sonya Savage, Minister of Environment and Protected Areas

“A more sustainable, diversified provincial economy requires using our resources more wisely, we need to think about waste as a resource rather than a cost. This investment in converting waste into other uses is going to make a real difference.”

Justin Riemer, CEO, Emissions Reduction Alberta

Circular Economy Challenge projects support waste reduction, material and feedstock substitution, value recovery, and reduction of the lifecycle environmental footprint of materials and products. These technology solutions can reduce the impacts of material production, processing, and disposal. The innovations invested in will support industry competitiveness, new venture creation, and economic diversification.

Projects include:

Carbon Upcycling Technologies
Demonstrate a commercial-scale carbon sequestration and utilization technology for the cement and concrete sector
ERA funding: $4.4 million | Project cost: $11 million

Circular Rubber Technologies Inc.
Reclaim rubber from end-of-life, high-grade tires from industrial activities and sell the end product back to manufacturers for use in new tires
ERA funding: $3.2 million | Project cost: $16 million

Hydrovac Waste Solutions Ltd.
Divert slurry from the landfill and recover valuable products from the hydro-vacuum process
ERA funding: $1.7 million | Project cost: $8 million

INCA Renewtech
Construct and operate a first-of-kind commercial facility to create a sustainable, advanced bio-composite material made from hemp stalk
ERA funding: $10 million | Project cost: $174.5 million

Northstar Clean Technologies Inc.
Design, build, and commence operations of a new asphalt roof shingles recycling facility
ERA funding: $7.1 million | Project cost: $20.6 million

Phyto Organix Foods Inc.
Construction of a large-scale, commercial, net zero yellow pea fractionation facility
ERA funding: $10 million | Project cost: $231 million

RBW Waste Management Ltd.
Install and commission a recycling system for high-density polyethylene containers and process them into new products
ERA funding: $700,000 | Project cost: $1.4 million

Rimrock Renewables LP.
Development of a prototype for digestate water treatment and fertilizer value-add opportunity for on-farm feedlot anaerobic digestors (AD)  
ERA funding: $8.4 million | Project cost: $19 million

Sparks Eggs
Dehydrate inedible eggs from an existing grading and packing facility into a powder to be used for pet food and animal feed
ERA funding: $500,000 | Project cost: $1 million 

Suncor Energy Inc.
Recover Vanadium, a valuable critical metal/element, and use it in the growing energy storage market
ERA funding: $7 million | Project cost: $36 million

“Government of Alberta funding through Emissions Reduction Alberta is critical to fulfilling our objective of meeting consumer demand for healthy, functional proteins and food co-products that are produced in a sustainable way. This project creates the opportunity to add value to Alberta’s pulse resources, diversify our economy, and directly help mitigate global food security risks, while doing so with a differentiated carbon and water sustainability footprint.”

 Chris Theal, President & CEO, Phyto Organix Foods Inc.

“The Suncor team and our partners are excited to advance this project which has the potential to produce commercial quantities of a critical metal used in the production of grid level energy storage solutions. The Alberta Vanadium Project is consistent with Suncor’s leading position in developing new lines of revenue that also support greater adoption of low carbon sources of energy.”

 Todd Pugsley, Director, Technology Development – Bitumen Value Chain, Suncor

“This support of Circular Rubber Technologies’ project is pivotal in advancing Canada’s circular economy. CRT is constructing the world’s first commercial scale rubber devulcanization facility for industrial tires, its first state of the art facility in Alberta, set to begin production in Fall 2023. ERA accelerates bringing CRT’s product—the world’s cleanest, highest quality rubber reclaim—to a $45 billion global market.”

Maartje Van Der Sande, CEO, Circular Rubber Technologies (CRT)

“Circularity in our economy will be integral to Alberta’s decarbonization efforts. Circular Economy Challenge funding signals the government’s commitment to supporting innovative companies like Carbon Upcycling, as we collaborate with industry partners and look to achieve commercial-scale impact in the cement industry.”

Ryan Bourns, Business Development Partnerships Manager, Carbon Upcycling

“Circular Economy Challenge funding will facilitate our company to meet zero-waste and sustainability goals for our food processing facility in Calgary. We will reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and transform our current waste product into a new ingredient for the pet food industry, creating a circular economy and permanent sustainable waste management solution.” 

Scott Brookshaw, Executive Vice President, Sparks Eggs, Division of Golden Valley Foods Ltd.

“Rimrock Renewables is honored to be recognized by the Government of Alberta through ERA as an innovator in the development of alternative energy solutions to support the Canadian energy transformation. Funding from partners like the ERA is key to accelerating our shovel-ready project and making an immediate impact to Canada’s emission reduction goals.”

Scott McLean, Director Rimrock Renewables; Executive Vice President Operations Tidewater Renewables Ltd.

“This funding will enable INCA Renewtech to significantly accelerate construction of our state-of-the-art hemp processing and composites manufacturing factory.  We will purchase waste straw from farmers currently growing hemp for plant-based protein and transform this renewable resource into advanced bio-composites for the automotive, marine, wind energy, and consumer plastics industries.”

Davd Saltman, Chairman & CEO, INCA Renewtech

“With funding from the Government of Alberta through ERA, we can reliably scale up a cleantech process that recycles hydrovac waste into valuable products for cement production. This will keep materials out of landfills, while helping Alberta’s cement and hydrovac industries get closer to meeting their sustainability and net-zero emission goals.”

Ash Thibault, Vice President, Hydrovac Waste Solutions.

“The Government of Alberta and ERA’s contribution to our innovative and proprietary clean technology process is hugely supportive in the commercialization of our first scale up asphalt shingle reprocessing facility in Alberta. This landmark facility will be the first in North America and launches our scalable business model to deploy our circular economy, clean technology solution across Canada and the US.”  

Aidan Mills, President and CEO, Northstar Clean Technologies Inc.

“Plastic recycling has been a longstanding aspiration of RBW Waste Management Ltd. Circular Economy Challenge funding allows this to become a reality. Plastic waste received at our facility will be converted to new recycled plastic products, reducing waste and reliance on virgin materials to make industrial products, while promoting a circular economy model for high-density polyethylene plastics.”

Rick Williams, President, RBW Waste Management Ltd.

Projects were selected through ERA’s competitive review process. A team of experts in science, engineering, business development, commercialization, financing, and greenhouse gas quantification conducted an independent, rigorous, transparent review overseen by a Fairness Monitor.

All ERA funding recipients are required to produce a final outcomes report that is shared publicly for the broader benefit of Alberta, as well as other funding proposals. Funding recipients will be required to report on project outcomes, achievements, and lessons learned including GHG reductions, job creation, and other environmental, economic, and social benefits.

​*A person-year is equal to one-year of employment for one individual.

For more information contact:

Neil Wedin
Media Relations, Emissions Reduction Alberta
Cell: 403.973.1015

For more than 13 years, ERA has been investing revenues from the carbon price paid by large emitters to accelerate the development and adoption of innovative clean technology solutions. Since we were established in 2009, we have committed $884 million toward 246 projects worth $7.1 billion that are helping to reduce GHGs, create competitive industries and are leading to new business opportunities in Alberta. These projects are estimated to deliver cumulative GHG reductions of 40 million tonnes by 2030 and 99 million tonnes by 2050.