Minister Uppal Announces Investment in Jobs and Clean Technology Projects in Alberta

EDMONTON, March 4, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Tim Uppal, Minister of State (Multiculturalism), on behalf of the Honourable Greg Rickford, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources, today announced investments totalling over $20.6 million for eight clean technology projects in Alberta, which will support jobs, economic growth and the environment. The projects announced today are benefitting from the Government of Canada's investment in SDTC's SD Tech Fund™ as part of Canada's Economic Action Plan.

These development projects will help reduce emissions, protect the environment and generate high-quality jobs:

  • Field Upgrading will receive $5,200,000 to work on a technology that partially upgrades heavy oils by removing sulphur, heavy metals and acids and by reducing the need to add diluents. This technology will also eliminate certain greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (demonstration site: Fort Saskatchewan, Alberta).
  • Verolube Inc. will receive $3,994,000 to develop a technology that recycles used oil into marketable products (demonstration site: Bowden, Alberta).
  • Steeper Energy Canada in Calgary will receive $3,000,000 to transform biomass feedstock, which is usually disposed of in a landfill or by other means, into a renewable alternative that can then be used to dilute heavy oil (demonstration site: Peace River, Alberta).
  • Verdant Global will receive $2,500,000 for its project on growing plants indoors, using less energy and at a lower cost than traditional greenhouses, while avoiding GHG emissions from transporting produce from other sources (demonstration site: Calgary, Alberta).
  • Hifi Engineering Inc. will receive $2,000,000 to demonstrate a technology that can continuously monitor and detect low level leaks in oil and gas pipelines, a procedure that will prevent product release into the environment (demonstration site: Calgary, Alberta).
  • Questor Technology will receive $1,978,000 to develop a technique that captures waste heat from incinerators and other heat sources and turns it into electricity (demonstration site: Grande Prairie, Alberta).
  • Pure Technologies Ltd. will receive $1,000,000 to test its SmartBall tool to detect leaks in natural gas pipelines, preventing release into the environment (demonstration site: Calgary, Alberta). and
  • Luxmux Technology will receive $980,350 to produce an energy-efficient heavy oil recovery tool aimed at improving the control and quality of steam used to separate sand from oil, thus reducing GHG emissions and water usage (demonstration site: Calgary, Alberta).


Quick Facts

  • Canada possesses one of the cleanest electricity mixes in the world with just under two-thirds of its electricity coming from renewable sources — the highest in the G7.
  • In 2013, Canada was the second-fastest growing clean energy market in the G20.
  • Canada's per-capita GHG emissions are now among their lowest level since tracking began.
  • In 2013, the Government of Canada announced $325 million over eight years in support for SDTC for advanced research projects resulting in a cleaner environment.
  • SDTC's SD Tech Fund™ has supported 269 projects with $684 million allocated by the federal government.
  • 57 of the more mature companies supported by SDTC have received $2.5 billion in follow-on financing as of December 2013, meaning that for every dollar invested by Canada in these companies, the marketplace has responded with $14 of private capital.
  • The SD Tech Fund™ supports projects that address climate change, air quality, clean water and clean soil, providing solutions to key Canadian industries that increase efficiency and enhance environmental responsibility.



"Our government is positioning Canada as a global leader in the clean technology sector by supporting innovative projects aimed at creating jobs and growing our economy while contributing to a cleaner environment. We are proud to invest in these innovative companies, and the projects announced today will create jobs for Albertans and continue to place Canada at the forefront of the clean tech industry. "
The Honourable Tim Uppal
Minister of State (Multiculturalism)

"The projects announced today are great examples of the Canadian clean tech initiatives and true entrepreneurship that drive SDTC's portfolio. By supporting these innovative technologies, SDTC is investing in efficiency and environmental performance — which translates into a cleaner environment. We look forward to working with these companies to get their products to market successfully."
Jane Pagel
Acting CEO of Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC)

"Our technology is a real breakthrough in heavy oil upgrading. We are thrilled that the federal government, through SDTC's due diligence and funding, has recognized the economic value of bringing low emissions upgrading back to Canada. Our de-sulphurization and upgrading (DSU) technology surgically removes all the nasty stuff from heavy oil like acids, metals and sulphur without leaving coke or asphaltenes behind. At the same time, it makes the heavy oil significantly lighter so that far less diluent is required to ship it to market and has global benefits by providing a low-sulfur fuel option for the shipping industry."
Neil Camarta
President and CEO of Field Upgrading Limited

"Following more than a decade of research, laboratory testing and development, VeroLube, Inc. is ready to proceed with its $56 million used motor oil proof of concept re-refinery. Thanks in large part to support from the Government of Canada through SDTC, the company will produce the world's first Group III synthetic grade base lubricating base oil from re-refined used motor oil. The SDTC grant was a major catalyst in assisting our financing to allow this important green energy project to be built."
Leslie Wulf
Founder and Director, Verolube Inc.

"Steeper Energy Canada is proud to be building toward the supply of large volumes of renewable fuel oil, based on technology being advanced here in Canada, for the benefit of Canadian energy exporters and refiners. Because of support from the Government of Canada through Sustainable Development Technology Canada, Steeper Energy Canada is able to commercialize its patented Hydrofaction™ technology that will contribute renewable hydro-carbon molecules based on the transformation of Canadian forestry industry wastes in order to help reduce Canada's carbon footprint and aid heavy oil movement through pipelines across Canada and the USA."
Perry Toms
CEO, Steeper Energy Canada Ltd.

"Thanks in part to a strong investment from the Government of Canada, Verdant Global will be able to commercialize an advanced plant growing system that will allow Canadians to eat fresh fruit and vegetables all year round. As a result, we will see less pollution from transport trucks and less spoiled produce as it is transported across North America."
Doug James
CEO, Verdant Global

"We feel the support that SDTC and the Government of Canada have provided us has absolutely accelerated Hifi's ability to develop and commercialize our HDS technology. This next-generation platform sensitivity and fidelity is going to enhance the energy industry's future and achieve the goal of 100 percent safety."
Steven Koles
CEO, Hifi Engineering

"Questor is very pleased and grateful for the $1.9-million support provided by the Government of Canada through SDTC to develop, demonstrate and commercialize our waste heat to power technology, and this funding will be a key factor in the success and the acceleration of that initiative. This technology will have a significant impact world-wide on air quality, energy efficiency and sustainability while offering the opportunity to reduce GHG's at a cost of less than $3/tonne of CO2 equivalent."
Audrey Mascarenhas
President and CEO, Questor Technology Inc. 

"Thanks to support from the Government of Canada through SDTC support, Pure Technologies has been able to fast-track the development and demonstration of our technologies. This has allowed us to commercialize new technologies that have helped us become a world leader in inspection, monitoring and management of critical pipeline infrastructure."
Xiangjie Kong
Director and General Manager, Pure Technologies Ltd.

"Luxmux is pleased to develop a new technology that will help the oil industry measure steam quality more accurately and efficiently. Thanks in part to support from the Government of Canada through Sustainable Development Technology Canada, our new technology will allow operators to maximize steam quality from steam generators, reducing per-barrel emissions and increasing production."
Yonathan Dattner
President, Luxmux Technology Corporation

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Backgrounder – Government of Canada and SDTC Announce New Clean Technology Funding in Alberta


SOURCE Natural Resources Canada

For further information: Media may contact: Alexandra Lemieux, Press Secretary, Office of the Minister of Natural Resources, 613-996-2007; Media Relations, Natural Resources Canada, 613-992-4447; Kelly Crowe, Communications, SDTC, 613-234-6313 ext 243; The general public may contact: Mon.-Fri., 8:30 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. EST, Telephone: 613-995-0947, E-mail:; Follow us on Twitter: @NRCan (; NRCan's news releases and backgrounders are available at


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