Canadian Cleantech Summit in Ottawa


Solar panels

Image by Abi Skipp via Flickr

Ottawa – A whopping 85 per cent of Canada’s clean technology companies require no subsidies, are globally competitive, and are situated in what promises to be a $3-trillion industry by 2020.

These findings come from a major industry report that was released this weekend at the second annual Canadian Cleantech Summit, coordinated by the Ottawa Centre for Regional Innovation (OCRI). The Summit will also host the Ottawa launch for Mad Like Tesla, a new book about underdog inventors and their relentless pursuit of clean energy by Toronto Star energy and green technology reporter Tyler Hamilton.

The 2011 Canadian Clean Technology Industry Report, supported by the Canadian Clean Technology Coalition and authored by Analytica Advisors, is a comprehensive study of the industry’s revenue and employment profiles and covers nine major sectors: Biofuels and Bioenergy, Energy Efficiency, Energy Infrastructure, Industrial Processes, Power Generation, Recycling and Recovery, Remediation and Soil Treatment and Water and Wastewater.

“Canadian clean technology companies have proven their competitiveness by posting a compound annual growth rate of 19 per cent during the recession, and they grew by 56 per cent in 2010,” says Céline Bak, co-founder of the Canadian Clean Technology Coalition. “Canada’s clean technology industry already employs 44,000, similar to Canadian employment in mining, generates half of its sales from exports. We have the potential to build a $60 billion industry by 2020.”

Other results from the 2011 Canadian Clean Technology Industry Report include:

  • Canada has close to 700 clean technology companies
  • The average Canadian clean technology company employs 62 people
  • Industry employment grew 11 per cent from 2008 to 2010
  • If the current growth rate is maintained, clean technology industry employment could total 75,000 by 2015 and 126,000 by 2020
  • Canadian 2010 clean technology industry revenues totaled $9 billion
  • Canadian-owned clean technology companies generated 86 per cent of this revenue
  • Canadian based foreign subsidiaries generated 14 per cent of this revenue
  • Canada’s clean technology industry revenues grew at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 19 per cent between 2008 and 2010
  • If Canadian clean technology companies maintain a 19 per cent CAGR, Canada’s clean technology industry revenues will reach $61.4 billion by 2020, about the size of Canada’s automotive industry today

“These powerful numbers speak to the proven potential of Canada’s clean technology entrepreneurs,” says Hamilton. “In Mad Like Tesla I look at some of the unconventional approaches scientists, inventors, academics and entrepreneurs are taking in their quest to put Canada and the world on a low-carbon, climate-friendly diet, as well as the many barriers they face in their journey. To have so many of such innovators all in one place at this Summit is a reason to be optimistic about the future.”

The second annual Canadian Cleantech Summit was held at the Ottawa Convention Centre Oct. 27 – 28, and brought Canadian clean technology researchers, investors, entrepreneurs and policy makers together in a single venue.

See the full program schedule for more information.