Nobody understands farming better than farmers and nobody understands the pressures of climate change on the agriculture industry better than those working in it. This is why at Elite Agri Solutions, one of our main focuses is to help Ontario farms make the transition to a low-carbon economy for the best possible value. We want to create an environment for the development and adoption of clean technology that helps promote sustainable growth and aligns our agricultural sector with Canada’s climate goals.
Climate change is becoming more of a threat to Canadian agriculture with more severe weather events, more variable seasons, biodiversity rates dropping, and more. Big industries such as ours are often placed in the hot seat for these changes. When it comes to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, there is no doubt that every industry can do better and we want to do better. Instead of being in the spotlight for our GHG emissions, our goal for Southwestern Ontario is to be in the spotlight for the transitions we’ve made and are making to clean technology; Technology with measurable GHG emissions reductions and other environmental benefits.
With the help of the federal Agriculture Clean Technology Funding Program (ACT), we have been able to help farmers secure the funding needed to upgrade and replace old, inefficient farm equipment with newer, energy efficient technology, develop better nutrient management plans, and adopt precision agriculture practices.
The ACT program is a result of Canada’s recently updated climate plan, A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy, allocating $165.7 million to eligible projects. With emphasis being placed on technologies that enable a transition away from fossil fuels, encouraging a switch to cleaner energy. The program has two streams, the Adoption Stream and the Research and Innovation Stream. The Adoption Stream focuses on projects in 3 priority areas: green energy and energy, precision agriculture, and bioeconomy. Technologies eligible for the program are becoming more widely available and have been consistently improved upon to ensure the same (if not better) farm yields and quality crops and operations. The Research and Innovation stream supports research, development, demonstration and commercialization activities of pre-market innovations, highlighting the importance of continued search for new climate solutions. There is a two-step application process for the program. The first step is to submit a project summary form to ensure the project is eligible and aligns with the program. If accepted, you are then invited to submit a full application with the fine details of the project including equipment and construction quotes, budget details, and a project workplan.
Canada is cracking down on its climate goals and the agricultural sector can’t make the transition to a low-carbon economy alone. Support such as the ACT program is vital to ensure a smooth transition for the environment, economy, and for the farmers themselves. With the majority of our team involved in farming directly, we understand the juggling act that farming can be, even before taking into account the new climate policies and goals being set in place. Let us help you navigate this new environment and make the best transition to a low-carbon economy for your operations.
In partnership with Western University’s Master of Environment and Sustainability program (MES), we recently had a report completed by five MES students on existing and emerging technologies eligible under the ACT program requirements. The five technologies they focused on were: precision agriculture and steam flaking, solar panels for net metering, grain dryer upgrades for efficiency, on-farm manure management systems, and geothermal energy for livestock barn heating. Over the next few weeks, we will be releasing the highlights from that report here to continue showing you how Elite Agri Solutions is the solution.