Government of Alberta and ERA announces $40 million to accelerate commercialization of emissions-reducing technology for small and medium-sized enterprises

EDMONTON, AB – Emissions Reduction Alberta’s (ERA) launched its $40 million Emerging Innovators Challenge in support of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME’s) working to develop transformative emissions reduction technologies.

This funding opportunity is made possible through the Government of Alberta’s Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction (TIER) fund. Rebecca Schulz, Minister of Environment and Protected Areas, made the announcement alongside ERA’s CEO, Justin Riemer, CEO, during Small Business Week on Tuesday, October 17, at the Energy Transition Centre in Calgary.

SMEs, organizations with fewer than 500 employees, are critical to economic prosperity and represent the largest portion of companies in Alberta. Through the $40 million Emerging Innovators Challenge, ERA will invest in scale-up, pilot, demonstration, and first-of-kind projects led by SME’s. To help address barriers typically faced by these businesses, ERA will work with innovation support providers in the province to help applicants and aim to achieve higher commercialization success rates for funded projects.

“Small businesses have a big impact in Alberta. We’re helping our amazing makers, entrepreneurs and creators lower emissions and create cutting-edge ideas for the future. I look forward to seeing the creative technologies that result from this exciting new funding competition.”

Rebecca Schulz, Minister of Alberta Environment and Protected Areas

“With more than half of the funded projects in ERA’s portfolio led by SMEs, we are deeply committed to supporting the success of these organizations and the leading-edge work they do. This new funding opportunity will help Alberta businesses access the critical capital and support services they need to get their technologies to market.”

Justin Riemer, CEO, Emissions Reduction Alberta 

While the funding call will not be sector or technology-prescriptive, ERA is seeking applications for new technology projects that can catalyze emissions reduction solutions in areas such as enhanced energy efficiency and productivity, circular economy, digital solutions, methane emissions reduction, agriculture, forestry, and natural carbon management. Up to $5 million per project is available with a minimum request of $250,000. The application deadline is Thursday, December 14, at 5p.m. Mountain Daylight Time (UTC-6h) 

All projects supported through the Emerging Innovators Challenge must demonstrate a clear and justified value proposition for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and/or enabling a sustainable net-zero economy in Alberta. Technology solutions can originate from anywhere globally, but must be piloted, demonstrated, or deployed in Alberta. An hour-long informational webinar will be held on Thursday, October 26, at 1 p.m.

“The funding, mentorship, and guidance we have received from ERA and the Government of Alberta has been vitally important to us as we take our Alberta-developed technology across the province and to international markets. The capital and support have allowed us to get the attention of the largest producers in the world as we make food production more sustainable by economically transforming waste into products for the circular economy including natural fertilizers, high value biogas feedstock, and clean, reusable water.”

Karen Schuett, co-founder and CEO, Livestock Water Recycling

“Eavor Technologies has seen recent international commercial success in Germany, the United States, and around the world; proving that geothermal is a reliable and sustainable source of power. Alberta proved to be a positive testing ground for advancing this technology to commercialization, leveraging years of investment in our people, drilling rigs, and drilling technology in the process. Support from ERA and the Government of Alberta was critical for us as a start-up.”

Jeanine Vany, Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Eavor Technologies

“Alberta is uniquely positioned to lead the world in emissions reduction technologies with our unique combination of innovators, researchers, and industrial adopters. This investment today from Government of Alberta through Emissions Reduction Alberta puts wind in the sails of many of our province’s brightest future technologies and showcases, once again, ERA’s unparalleled leadership in the province’s innovation ecosystem.”

Kevin Krausert, CEO and Co-Founder, Avatar Innovations

“Strategic funding is a critical barrier preventing Canadian cleantech innovations from being deployed at scale. ERA’s collaborative and unique framework enables them to distribute market-driven capital quickly, where it can have the maximum impact. Government of Alberta funding through ERA’s Emerging Innovators Challenge will enable Alberta-based innovators to deploy the solutions that are driving Canada toward net zero. We are so excited to see which SME’s are successful in this challenge, so they can show their true potential.”

Jeanette Jackson, CEO, Foresight Canada

“Alberta is home to some of the world’s most impressive innovators. At Platform, we have the opportunity to work with entrepreneurs who are building ventures that will fuel our economy, tackle generational challenges, and create thousands of good paying jobs. We are proud to work in partnership with Emissions Reductions Alberta and the Government of Alberta to ensure that the solutions of tomorrow are developed right here in the province.”

Terry Rock, President & Chief Executive Officer, Platform Calgary

“There is no better time than right now for ERA to launch this funding for cleantech, climate innovation, and mitigation solutions. Startups and scaleups are key to our sustainable future and to the economic diversification of our region. The Government of Alberta financial support provided to ERA will help more local entrepreneurs to develop novel IP, deliver Edmonton’s innovations to global markets, and reduce emissions on the home front.” 

Catherine Warren, CEO, Edmonton Unlimited

Submissions will be selected through ERA’s competitive review process. A team of experts in science, engineering, business development, commercialization, financing, and GHG quantification will conduct an independent, rigorous, transparent review overseen by a Fairness Monitor. 

For more information contact

Kevin Duncan 
Media Relations, Emissions Reduction Alberta 
Cell: 403-431-2859  


For 14 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 $887 million toward 254 projects worth $7.7 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 110 million tonnes by 2050.


The Technology Innovation Emissions Reduction (TIER) regulation is at the core of emissions management in Alberta. TIER implements Alberta’s industrial carbon pricing and emissions trading system. TIER is an improved system to help industrial facilities find innovative ways to reduce emissions and invest in clean technology to stay competitive and save money.