WWF-Canada awards $300,000 in contracts for new technologies that help measure carbon that’s stored in nature
May 31, 2023
The Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge award recipients are using innovation to help communities overcome barriers to measuring the outcomes of nature-based climate solutions
Ottawa, Canada – WWF-Canada is excited to announce three award recipients of the Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge, which is catalyzing the development of cost-effective, innovative and user-friendly technologies and approaches to facilitate the community-led measurement of carbon in nature.
The following organizations will be awarded $100,000 in contracts:
- Innovatree Carbon Group Ltd., Kamloops, B.C., for its forest carbon monitoring software.
- Korotu Technology, Toronto, for its LandSteward platform that enables community forest monitoring and carbon reporting through CarbonWatch.
- Digital Forest Lab at Laval University, Quebec City, for its Forest BIOmass measurement system, which uses 3D terrestrial LiDAR SCANning (BioScan3D)
To reach the global climate targets and keep warming below 1.5 degrees, greenhouse gas emissions must be cut drastically.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has recognized the significant role that nature can play in fighting climate change, but there are historical challenges like cost and timeliness of measuring and monitoring conservation actions to ensure that the expected carbon benefit is realized.
How does one measure the carbon benefit of approaches such as restoration and protection? How can it be assessed if these efforts are making any difference for climate? After piloting five technologies, WWF-Canada is pleased to announce the final award recipients who will continue to work with communities to better track the impact of conservation actions.
Megan Leslie, President and CEO at WWF-Canada says, “The implementation of user-friendly technologies will support the tremendous amount of conservation work, including efforts led by Indigenous Peoples and local communities across Canada. Using these technologies to measure the carbon benefits of restoring and protecting nature in Canada will support the implementation of nature-based climate solutions. It has been proven that nature is carbon, nature is habitat, and nature is a key solution.”
Garrett Whitworth, Director at Innovatree Carbon Group Ltd. says, “This award will allow our team to provide valuable ecosystem and carbon sequestration information to First Nation communities and give us the flexibility to continue software development in a challenging and extraordinarily biodiverse coastal forest ecosystem.”
Agata Rudd, co-founder at Korotu Technology says, “Working with WWF-Canada will help Korotu Technology accelerate the development of the technology and get it into the hands of users to help protect the climate and biodiversity.”
Martin Béland, Associate Professor of Environmental Remote Sensing at Laval University says, “Through this award our aim is to make the technology more accessible to community users by providing low-cost access to lidar instruments, creating a software pipeline that will simplify the data processing chain, and produce reliable reports on above ground carbon….”
The impact of the technologies extends far beyond this challenge by supporting community conservation efforts.
“Understanding the impact that the recent wildfires have had on the forest ecosystem in the interior of B.C. is critically important to successful restoration and future ecological adaptation to climate change,” says Angela Kane, CEO at Secwepemcul’ecw Restoration and Stewardship Society. “Our forest carbon monitoring is building a justification for increased biodiversity across the landscape, particularly as it applies to culturally important trees and plants.”
WWF-Canada created the Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge as part of its 10-year strategic plan to Regenerate Canada. The plan outlines the organization’s commitment to restore 1 million hectares of land, steward 100 million hectares and reduce carbon emissions by 30 million tonnes.
WWF-Canada’s Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge, supported by founding partner RBC Tech for Nature and national technology sponsor Microsoft, catalyzes the development of user-friendly and innovative technologies to support community-led measurement of carbon in nature. Techhub.wwf.ca
Video available about project here: Discover the Latest Carbon-Measuring Tech
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