october 11-12, 2017
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St. John's, NL

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Clean tech here, clean tech there, clean tech everywhere!

October 2, 2017 - Posted by Kieran Hanley

The Federal government of late has had an aggressive focus on the environment, curbing greenhouse gas emissions, and supporting the growth of the nation's clean technology sector.

From helping firms finance the adoption of clean technologies, to helping them hire new environmental-focused STEM employees, to helping them bring their clean technology products and services abroad - supports are emerging everywhere from the CBCDs to BDC to ECO Canada.

But how to make sense of it all? I work in this world every day, and admittedly I am having a hard time nailing it all down. Well at Newleef 2017 we've got a speaker who is going to summarize it all for you (and me!) in one presentation. Here are all of the supports - and here's how you can access them! This is a must-see session for businesses at all stages and of all sizes.

Regrettably, when searching 'clean technology' images I came across a bunch of windmills and solar panels. While 'clean energy' certainly is an example of clean technology, it is but one small category. We're trying to convey the message that clean technology can be a wide variety of products or services... even a widget in this piece of machinery - whatever this is - that reduces the amount of materials required to manufacture the end product - whatever that may be. Need help understanding what clean tech can be? Click here.

But the clean tech fun doesn't stop there at Newleef. Michelle Simms, President and CEO of the Genesis Centre, is hosting a feature panel discussion exploring the experiences of three startup clean technology firms in the province: MYSA, Power HV Inc, and Seaformatics.

Another session is going to introduce you to three new developments in local clean technology: fresh approaches to water analysis, protecting your business from escalating energy costs, and highlighting the work of Paradigm Hyperloop - you know, the crew that placed second in an international competition. That's a lot of links in one paragraph; I'm starting to second guess this website's colour scheme.

Curious what that logo's all about? Click here!

To finish the discussion off, I'm going to fill you in on what NEIA's path forward is and how we plan to help the private sector make the most of the clean technology opportunity. We have lots cooking!

Oh, and if you're not sure what clean technology is or if your firm fits under that umbrella, click here.

- Kieran

That's nice, but what does it all mean for Newfoundland and Labrador?

September 28, 2017 - Posted by Kieran Hanley

Two blog posts in one day? Matt is going to be so proud of me. It's been a busy week for Matt.

Speaking of busy, I can only imagine what the past year has been like for the crew in the province's climate change branch. For some time now they have been involved with the Federal government and their provincial counterparts on the creation of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change.

A good read if you're curious about what's driving Canada's approach to environment and clean technology. Warning: it's 85 pages.

What's that? Well it's Canada's approach to pricing carbon pollution, achieving GHG reductions, and driving innovation and growth towards a low-carbon economy. One wonders what impact (opportunity!) all of these cross-Canada actions are going to have our our province in terms of policies and programs and the like.

Well, wonder no more! Jackie Janes, Assistant Deputy Minister with the Climate Change Branch, is going to give us the scoop.

Also, for good measure, Gerald Crane (Director of Research, Analysis and Government Relations with the branch) is going to explain the province's new Greenhouse Gas Reporting Regulations and give it the W5 treatment: who, what, where, when, and why.

We appreciate the Climate Change Branch participating at Newleef again this year to give us all an update on what they're up to.

- Kieran

Emerging technologies to assess and monitor the environment

September 28, 2017 - Posted by Kieran Hanley

Good morning!

So have you heard about the new Genomic Technologies for Environmental Assessment and Monitoring, or CEGA? You might have missed it in the news ("World’s first environmental genomics research centre opens in St. John’s") but it's a new asset environmental professionals in the province should know about.

CEGA will research how genomics — the study of genes and their functions — can be used to identify and characterize organisms in a situated environment... with the intention to assist in environmental assessment and monitoring practices. Dr. Mehrdad Hajibabaei, CEGA’s chief scientific adviser, is going to introduce the new outfit to conference attendees, and highlight the role the new 3,500 sq. ft. facility will play in pushing innovative applied research from Newfoundland and Labrador to the world.

The best I could do with pictures of satellites and genomics, photoshop, and three minutes.

The CEGA presentation is part of a feature session we have on Day 1 of Newleef, which also includes a presentation from Dr. Freeman Ralph, C-CORE's Chief Operating Officer. C-CORE has been working on the progression of satellite monitoring for remote environments and climate change adaptation, specifically related to:
  • water quality, quantity and sedimentation
  • river ice buildup and breakup
  • sea ice safety and edge location
  • frost heave (for highway/runway safety)

We think this session is going to provide some great information on what the future has in store for environmental monitoring!

- Kieran

Here comes the Minister

September 26, 2017 - Posted by Kieran Hanley

I think it's appropriate for the first session we highlight on this blog be the first on our agenda - the conference opening by the Hon. Christopher Mitchelmore.

Minister Mitchelmore is responsible for the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation - a department that we work with quite closely in clost with partnership with towards the growth of our sector. From international business missions to long term sector development strategies to the individual needs of our members, NEIA's staff is in contact with department officials on a daily basis. So much so that we affectionately refer to the crew as TCII (pronounced: TC2).

I have no idea what's going on here, but it looks great.

There's a lot to talk about. NEIA is a co-lead on the next Cabinet Committee on Jobs process on technology (breaking: the results of their first process with the aquaculture industry); their work continues on the development of a new provincial innovation agenda; and... well I don't want to ruin the speech. But suffice it to say that there's a lot going on that will be of great interest to Newleef 2017 attendees. Plus, the breakfast will be good too.

We're looking forward to hosting the Minister and are appreciative that he can spend his time with us.

- Kieran



On the home stretch to #Newleef2017

September 26, 2017 - Posted by Kieran Hanley

Our Marketing and Communications expert Matt Rumboldt tells me that it might be an interesting idea to run a blog each day leading up to our conference to talk about the different sessions that will be presented at Newleef 2017. Far be it for me to argue with the expert!

Artist's representation of me blogging.

In convincing me to put pen to paper (or finger to key) he made a good point - though the event is just two days in duration, it is in fact the product of several months work. The agenda which popped up online last week may seem like a random conglomerate of unrelated presentations, but in fact there is a method to the madness.

The themes, sessions, and individual presentations which make up our Newleef 2017 agenda are the product of: (1) suggestions from our members and trusted contacts throughout the course of the calendar year - even so far back as last year's conference; (2) areas of opportunity or interest flagged by our Board of Directors, its committees, and NEIA's staff; (3) the results from our call for abstracts; and (4) emerging sector developments.

Through this blog, daily until the conference, I am going to take a moment to talk about each session and give some insight in to why we put it on the agenda and why we think it has value.

- Kieran


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