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13/04/2024
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Canada launches $40M research fund for critical minerals value chains

The Canadian government wants to become a net-zero nation by 2050 and continues to fund new technologies that utilize critical minerals given their use in green, low-carbon technologies such as batteries and solar panels.

This time its investing $40 million to support developing technology and pilot demonstration projects that develop critical minerals value chains.

Supported by

On Tuesday, Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson introduced the second call for proposals for the Critical Minerals Research Development and Demonstration (CMRDD) Program.

The goal is to collaborate with successful applicants to promote environmentally friendly and efficient methods of producing and processing critical minerals. It also aims to foster continued investment in critical minerals value chains, ensuring their sustainability and long-term growth.

“From exploration and extraction to advanced manufacturing to processing and recycling, we are making investments across the value chain,” said Wilkinson in a statement.

Pilot plant and demonstration projects that demonstrate technology readiness levels (TRL) of 6-8 are eligible for funding of up to $5 million per project. These projects aim to advance technologies for the production of essential critical minerals, supporting the raw material inputs required for priority value chains in Canada.

The priority sectors include clean technologies, advanced manufacturing, information and communications technologies and semiconductors.

To apply, interested parties can submit their applications online. The deadline for submission is 4 p.m. ET on Sept. 29, 2023.

Canada, with its abundant mineral resources, is poised to capitalize on the growing global demand for critical minerals, which are essential for the transition to a low-carbon, green, and digital economy.

The latest funding round seeks to address gaps in the critical minerals value chain by moving projects from the pre-commercial stage to demonstration, adoption, and integration into both domestic and international value chains.

They will aim to enhance cost-effectiveness in capital and operations, enable efficient extraction from unconventional sources, develop innovative mineral processing methods, and reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions. They will also promote resource optimization and waste reduction through circular economy principles.

As part of Canada’s first Critical Minerals Strategy, Budget 2022 has proposed providing up to $3.8 billion in support over six years.

This funding will be allocated to various critical minerals projects, with a particular focus on manufacturing, processing, and recycling initiatives. The Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF) will administer a total of $1.5 billion in targeted support for these projects, prioritizing their advancement.

 

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