“Mission from MaRS: Climate Impact Challenge” seeks leading climate-tech companies from across Canada

TORONTO, January 28, 2021 – MaRS today announced a national initiative to identify Canada’s most promising climate-technology ventures with the potential to rapidly reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. The initiative also seeks to eliminate the barriers to adoption that prevent such companies from realizing their global potential.

Mission from MaRS: Climate Impact Challenge is an ambitious program by MaRS to address the climate crisis. MaRS is seeking ventures across three key greenhouse-gas-emitting industries: real estate, transportation and energy. Together, these sectors have the potential to mitigate gigatons of greenhouse-gas emissions globally and, in the process, change the way the marketplace views Canada’s cleantech sector.

“With all the issues confronting humanity today, the big systemic challenge of our time, climate change, remains the greatest existential threat. The good news is that we already have the technology we need to achieve global carbon reduction targets,” says Yung Wu, the chief executive officer of MaRS. “To address this challenge, we need to rapidly scale existing solutions by bringing to the table corporations that can adopt technologies that will bring about change. Simply put, we want to help create Canadian climate tech ‘unicorns’ that can drive the growth and own a piece of what is forecast to be a multi-trillion-dollar global cleantech market, while also helping to achieve Paris Accord climate targets.”

This nationwide initiative will select 10 finalists. Companies can apply from February 10, 2020 to March 24, 2021. MaRS has partnered with Rho AI to conduct carbon reduction assessments for all shortlisted finalists.

The Carbon Reduction Assessment of New Enterprises (CRANE) tool is a novel evaluation platform, developed through a collaboration between Prime Coalition, Rho AI, Greenometry, Clean Energy Trust and Project Drawdown. CRANE makes climate-impact assessments of early-stage companies less labour intensive, yet more data driven, transparent and standardized.

These assessments, combined with expert input from an industry review committee, will inform the selection of 10 companies that will advance through the Mission from MaRS program. Each will be paired with a curated team of investors, regulators, potential customers and corporate partners to address barriers to success and identify adoption opportunities. The cohort will be announced at the end of May, 2021.

To learn more, attend the kick-off event on February 10, 2021.

Mission from MaRS: Climate Impact Challenge has received generous funding from HSBC, RBC Foundation and the Trottier Family Foundation.

“HSBC has set out an ambitious plan to prioritize financing and investment that supports the transition to a net-zero global economy and helps to build a thriving, resilient future for society and businesses,” says Kim Hallwood, head of sustainability, HSBC Bank Canada. “The transition to a net-zero economy requires radical new solutions. We are thrilled to help accelerate the adoption of promising and innovative clean technologies in Canada through the Mission from MaRS: Climate Impact Challenge.”

“At RBC, we believe in the power of innovative technologies to address and scale solutions to some of the most pressing environmental issues of our time,” said Valerie Chort, vice president, corporate citizenship and sustainability, RBC. “We’re proud to be supporting Mission from MaRS through RBC Tech for Nature, to encourage the development of real-world, scalable solutions to tackle the challenges that continue to plague our environment.”

“The Trottier Family Foundation adopts a science-based approach towards modeling and engineering, with the goal of solving real-world environmental problems,” says Eric St-Pierre, executive director of the Trottier Family Foundation. “Specifically, we would like to see deep and meaningful emissions reductions — ideally carbon neutrality by 2050. Scalable solutions that successfully climb the valley of death, such as the ones that will be recognized through this initiative, will make a world-changing impact to scaling climate solutions.”

For more information visit: https://marsdd.com/mission-from-mars


About MaRS

MaRS is North America’s largest urban innovation hub. A registered non-profit, MaRS supports high-growth startups and scale-ups tackling key issues in health, cleantech, fintech and other sectors. In addition, MaRS convenes all members of the tech ecosystem to drive breakthrough discoveries, grow the economy and make an impact by solving real problems for real people — in Canada and around the world.


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