If you have a way to track carbon in nature, we need to talk: You could receive a contract worth up to $100,000 to help bring your tech to scale. You’ll also receive guidance and assistance from WWF-Canada’s scientists and access to an executive coaching opportunity from Microsoft Canada. Here’s how to get started:

 

 

HOW TO APPLY

Step 1: CREATE ACCOUNT

Login or register now

 

Step 2: PREPARE YOUR APPLICATION

Use this template to prepare your application. To help you put it together, see how we’ll be assessing projects with our evaluation criteria and review the Terms and Conditions.

 

Step 3: ENTER APPLICATION

Ready to apply? Fill out the webform and hit submit.

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WHY MEASURE CARBON IN NATURE?

Canada is facing dual crises of biodiversity loss and climate change. Globally, one-third of our climate change-causing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions comes from the destruction of trees, ground cover, peatlands, and coastal ecosystems. By safeguarding existing carbon-rich ecosystems, and restoring habitat that absorbs even more carbon, we can slow and reverse climate change while allowing biodiversity to thrive.

Protecting and restoring natural features that catch and store carbon (also referred to as Nature-based climate solutions, or NbCS), plays an important role in achieving our commitments to get to net zero by 2050. But we must be able to measure how much carbon is being captured by nature over time, to ensure we meet those targets. A variety of approaches for carbon measurement already exist, but they often deliver incomplete data and are costly and/or labour and time intensive.

The Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge is supported by founding partner RBC Tech for Nature and national technology sponsor Microsoft.

 

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© Living Lakes Canada / WWF-Canada

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THE FACTS

What we know about Canada's water

Human activities are stressing Canada’s watersheds and a lack of comprehensive, open access water data means little to no knowledge of how those threats are impacting watershed health. This data and knowledge will become crucial for making decisions in a warming world.

In 2017, WWF-Canada completed the first-ever national assessment of Canada’s watersheds. We examined four indicators of health and seven indicators of threat to assign overall scores to each watershed. Where there was not enough data available, the watershed was considered data deficient.

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WATER HEALTH AT A GLANCE
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110/167

sub-watersheds are data deficient

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37

sub-watersheds received a less than good flow score

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42

sub-watersheds have poor or fair water quality

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112

sub-watersheds are data deficient for benthic macro-invertebrates

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53/167

sub-watersheds have high or very high threats. Pollution, habitat fragmentation and habitat loss are the most common.

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126

sub-watersheds are experiencing moderate or high threats from climate change

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See WWF-Canada's Watershed Reports for a complete status report on Canada's freshwater ecosystems.

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THE CHALLENGE

WWF-Canada is seeking cost-effective, innovative and user-friendly technologies (hardware and/or software) to support community-led carbon measurement of nature-based climate solutions in Canada.

CHALLENGE STREAMS

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Carbon is stored differently in different ecosystems. Therefore, the tools and techniques used to measure carbon in nature will differ depending on the system of study. The Nature x Carbon challenge focuses on technologies that measure carbon in terrestrial and coastal ecosystems. The categories include:

Biomass

In this category we are looking for technology solutions that can measure carbon levels in biomass, or vegetation. Biomass carbon pools are located both above and below ground. In the case of a tree, the trunk, branches and leaves are all above-ground biomass. The living roots make up the below-ground biomass. In coastal ecosystems, it could be the leaves and roots of eelgrass. Globally, plant biomass has an estimated carbon pool of 450 Pg — that’s nine times total annual global emissions. Importantly, biomass carbon pools tend to be in a more continuous state of flux due to natural and anthropogenic impacts such as fire, harvesting and land-use change.

© WWF-Canada / Noah Cole

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CHALLENGE BRIEF 1

Urban communities and fresh water

How might we reduce the impacts of urban communities on our fresh water, allowing people and nature to thrive together?

THE PROBLEM

With more than 80 percent of Canadians living in cities, there is substantial pressure on urban watersheds. Increasing urbanization leads to pollution, habitat loss and habitat fragmentation. Climate change pressures exacerbate an already stressed relationship.

© Frank Parhizgar / WWF-Canada

Some examples of these threats are:
Pollution

The Toronto and Region Conservation Authority found that water quality is directly correlated to urbanization. They found the largest drivers of poor water quality are non-point source pollutants (such as the nutrients, pesticides and chemicals used to treat homes, gardens and roads) making their way into rivers and lakes through lawns, sewer drains and direct runoff. Other drivers include point-source pollutants such as industry spills and discharge and sewer outflows.

© Graeme Stewart-Robertson

Climate Change and Habitat Loss

Recent major flooding events in cities like Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and along the St. John River in New Brunswick are linked to increasing threats and urbanization. Often cities are built in a way that destroys the natural floodplain buffers of large bodies of water, replacing habitats with impervious surfaces and causing water to run off or pool, rather than be absorbed. These poorly planned conditions increase the chances of flooding. As extreme precipitation events become more frequent, flooding events will also increase and become more severe.

© iStock / Christophe Ledent / WWF-Canada

Habitat Fragmentation

Habitat fragmentation can have a significant impact on species. For example, the Okanagan population of Chinook salmon, which historically was large enough to support regional First Nations food and trade needs, was assessed as Endangered by COSEWIC in 2017. A key driver of their decline is the habitat fragmentation caused by dam constructions along their migration route.

Do you have a technology enabled solution to reduce the impacts of urban communities on our fresh water, allowing people and nature to thrive together? Register for the Generation Water Tech Challenge now.

Soils

In this category we are looking for technology solutions that can measure carbon levels in soils. Globally, soils store three times more carbon than vegetation reservoirs in the top metre alone. But there’s a lot of variability between habitats expected to have high soil organic carbon (SOC) (such as, peatlands and tidal salt marshes) and those expected to have comparatively low SOC (such as, agricultural lands).

© Ghost Watershed Alliance Society

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CHALLENGE BRIEF 2

Missing fresh water data

How might we revolutionize our approach to water data to empower decision making?

THE PROBLEM

Canada’s lack of water data is a challenge when making key decisions for conserving and managing a valuable natural resource.

Our 2017 Watershed Reports identified that 110 of 167 watersheds did not have enough data available to assess their health. Where monitoring does happen, the data is often inaccessible due to it being proprietary or in an incorrect format for analysis and use.

This adds up to a system where decision makers do not have adequate information required to make informed choices. Without baseline and real-time data, we can’t ensure that our water is healthy now, or in the future.

We have started building on the results Watershed Reports started, including through the use of blockchain technology and cutting-edge monitoring technology such as eDNA, but more needs to be done.

Do you have a technology enabled solution to revolutionize our approach to water data to empower decision making? Register for the Generation Water Tech Challenge now.

Ecosystems

In this category we’re looking for carbon measurement technologies that can assess the carbon storage and/or sequestration value in the biomass and soils of a set ecosystem. By measuring both categories, we can develop a more comprehensive assessment of the carbon storage value of the entire ecosystem.

© Ghost Watershed Alliance Society

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CHALLENGE BRIEF 2

Missing fresh water data

How might we revolutionize our approach to water data to empower decision making?

THE PROBLEM

Canada’s lack of water data is a challenge when making key decisions for conserving and managing a valuable natural resource.

Our 2017 Watershed Reports identified that 110 of 167 watersheds did not have enough data available to assess their health. Where monitoring does happen, the data is often inaccessible due to it being proprietary or in an incorrect format for analysis and use.

This adds up to a system where decision makers do not have adequate information required to make informed choices. Without baseline and real-time data, we can’t ensure that our water is healthy now, or in the future.

We have started building on the results Watershed Reports started, including through the use of blockchain technology and cutting-edge monitoring technology such as eDNA, but more needs to be done.

Do you have a technology enabled solution to revolutionize our approach to water data to empower decision making? Register for the Generation Water Tech Challenge now.

PUT YOUR CARBON MEASUREMENT TECHNOLOGY INTO ACTION WITH WWF-CANADA

 

Up to five finalists of the Nature x Carbon Tech Challenge will have the opportunity to test their technology solutions on the ground with communities that are already implementing nature-based climate solution projects. The robust award packages are designed to help scale the technologies.

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THE AWARDS

FINALISTS

 

Each finalist will receive:

ACCESS TO THE MICROSOFT GLOBAL SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAM*

MICROSOFT CANADA EXECUTIVE COACHING OPPORTUNITY
$
GRANT TO SUPPORT THEIR PARTICIPATION IN THE VALIDATION PHASE

*Pending/subject to confirmation of program eligibility

© iStock / wildnerdpix / WWF-Canada

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THE AWARDS

Finalists

A $25,000 grant

Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge Finalists will each receive a $25,000 grant to enable their participation in the Validation Phase.

 

Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship Program

The Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship Program supports social impact startups with technology, connections and expertise so they can focus on bringing their big visions to life and making the world a better place.

“At Microsoft we asked ourselves how we could further empower purpose-driven social enterprises that measure success not just by the profit they generate, but by the good they do. We know that technology plus purpose is powerful and lifts us all up and our goal is to supply social entrepreneurs with the best technologies to drive change.” - Jean-Phillipe Courtois, Microsoft Corporation

The program looks for commercial and non-commercial organizations and start-ups whose primary product and/or service contributes to the attainment of one or more of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).​

Your participation in the Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge will provide you with the opportunity to be admitted to the Microsoft Global Entrepreneurship Program.​

Participants can receive:​

  • Up to $120,000 in Azure credits​
  • Subscriptions for Visual Studio, Office 365, Dynamics and GitHub Enterprise
  • Enterprise-grade Azure support and access to engineers
  • Community Building/Exchange
  • Go-to-market support that can include things like access to resources designed to accelerate your time to market, generate leads and grow your business.

To learn more about the program visit: https://blogs.microsoft.com/blog/2020/02/21/creating-a-world-of-good-microsoft-launches-the-global-social-entrepreneurship-program/

 

Microsoft Canada Executive Coaching Opportunity

Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge finalists can also benefit from business mentoring from participating members of the Microsoft Canada Executive team to help them advance their projects. Finalists will gain access to one-on-one business mentoring with select Microsoft executives for general advice and guidance on their respective go-to-market strategies. Exact dates and times to be confirmed.

Examples of leadership roles include CFO, COO, CMO, PR Comms Lead, HR Director

FINAL AWARD RECIPIENTS

 

Each final award recipient will receive:

A CONTRACT VALUED AT UP TO
$
ONGOING ENGAGEMENT WITH WWF-CANADA STAFF

© iStock / wildnerdpix / WWF-Canada

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THE AWARDS

Final Award Recipients

A contract valued at up to $100,000

Final award recipients will each receive a contract valued at up to $100,000 to apply their technology in the field alongside WWF-Canada and our conservation partners on a nature-based climate solution project. The project and partners will be confirmed based on the nature of the technology developed by the final award recipients.

 

Ongoing engagement with WWF-Canada staff

WWF-Canada is committed to helping the Final Award Recipients of the Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge achieve impact with their technology. Where possible, WWF-Canada will leverage our networks to open doors for our Final Award Recipients.

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HOW DOES THE CHALLENGE WORK?
  • Sep 16, 2019

    Registration and summer series

    June 2021 – August 2021

    • Join us for interactive webinars and AMAs, check out our blogs and have the chance to interact with experts and WWF-Canada staff
    • Register at the Living Planet Tech Hub to stay in the know!
  • Sep 16, 2019

    Proposal submission

    September 2021 – November 2021

    • Submit your proposal online starting September 7
    • Connect with WWF-Canada experts to get tips on your proposal
  • Sep 11, 2019

    Proposal review

    November 2021 – December 2021

    • Our team of experts will review the proposals and invite selected applicants to participate in Pitch Week
  • Sep 11, 2019

    Pitch week

    January 17 - 21, 2022

    • Selected proponents will pitch to our panel of experts to determine who will be selected as our finalists
  • Sep 11, 2019

    Finalists announced

    March 2022

    • Up to five finalists will receive a grant of $25,000 each and be invited to participate in the validation phase
  • Sep 11, 2019

    Validation phase

    April 2022 – March 2023

    • Finalists will have one year to test and validate their technology in the field. They will be required to submit validation data for review
  • May 11, 2021

    Review and selection of final award recipients

    April 2023 – May 2023

    • Validation data will be reviewed and up to three final award recipients will be announced.
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ELIGIBILITY

We're looking for academics, scientists, engineers, entrepreneurs, and inventors.

The Nature X Carbon Tech challenge will be open to participants from Canada who are over the age of majority. Eligible participants include:

    • registered non-profits,
    • registered charities,
    • academics formally affiliated with an accredited post-secondary institution,
    • co-operative non-profits,
    • for-profit entities,
    • public sector,
    • collaboratives (project of more than one organization with the same legal form), or
    • multi-sectoral (project of more than one organization with different legal forms)

© iStock / wildnerdpix / WWF-Canada

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GENERATION WATER CHALLENGE

Frequently Asked Questions

ABOUT
1. What are the goals of the WWF-Canada Generation Water Tech Challenge?

WWF-Canada is seeking bold, innovative and transformative ideas to help achieve our vision of seeing all of Canada’s fresh water in good condition. Our Watershed Reports identified two priority problems for Canada’s fresh water: high threats to urban watersheds and missing data across the country. It’s time to move beyond good ideas to tangible solutions that will have meaningful impact for water.

We are looking for technology-enabled solutions using hardware and/or software to achieve conservation outcomes around 2 problem briefs (solutions can address one or both problem briefs):

  1. How might we reduce the impacts of urban communities on our fresh water, allowing people and nature to thrive together?
  2. How might we revolutionize our approach to water data to empower decision making?

By providing support through our awards to the winners of the Challenge, our goal is that eventually these technologies will be used at scale to see improvements in the scores of our Watershed Reports.

2. How will my submission be evaluated?

Our review committee involves experts from the conservation and innovation communities. After an initial eligibility screening, proposals will be evaluated based on:

  • Alignment with WWF-Canada’s goals
  • Ecological and social responsibility
  • Impact on freshwater health and or data
  • Scalability of the solution
  • Feasibility of implementing the solution
  • Innovative and novel technology or approach
  • Openness and accessibility of the solution, including sharing knowledge and key learnings
3. Is the Generation Water Tech Challenge available in French?

Unfortunately, the Challenge is not completely bilingual. Where possible, the content is available in French, however the User Profile registration process and online Submission Form are only available in English. If you would prefer to make your submission in French, please contact us and we will provide a French Submission Form. If you are selected as a Finalist, the presentation to the Expert Committee must be done in English.

Furthermore, the Climate Ventures: Earth Tech program is conducted in English. Some French services may be provided to our Award Recipients during the course of the program, but the ability to speak and write in English is required for participation. Our hope is that future WWF-Canada Challenges will be bilingual.

4. Can I talk to someone at WWF-Canada to learn more about the Watershed Reports of about the Generation Water Tech Challenge?

Sure! If you have any questions, send us a message and we’ll get in touch.

APPLYING
5. Can I submit more than one idea?

Individuals can only enter one Submission, however, you can be listed as a team member on multiple Submissions. Keep in mind that Award Recipients will need to be available to participate in the Climate Ventures: Earth Tech program, so it is unlikely that two ideas from the same person will be selected as Award Recipients.

6. Does my solution need to address both problem briefs?

No. Your solution only needs to address one problem brief, although if it touches on both, great!

7. Innovative vs. invention?

When we talk about innovation, we don’t necessarily mean that you’ve invented something new. There are many opportunities to use existing technologies in new and innovative ways. To be eligible for this Challenge, you do not need to have created a completely new product (although if you have, that’s pretty cool too!) We will also be considering those submissions which find a novel approach to using existing technologies to solve freshwater issues.

8. What does "discovery to validation" mean?

There are several stages involved in taking a good idea and bringing it up to scale. They can be categorized as:

  • Ideation: An entrepreneur has an idea. This phase includes initial market and technology exploration.
  • Discovery: In this phase the value proposition of the venture is established, ideas are tested, a proof of concept is achieved, and customers are identified. This phase also involves early financials
  • Validation: During this phase, a business model established, there is a minimum viable product, and customers are verified. There may be some initial orders and the testing of a go-to-market strategy.
  • Efficiency: This phase starts to see initial market traction. Forecasts begin being based on actuals. There is a transition to scaling sale and marketing and demand creation.
  • Scale: In the final phase, there is a validated product and market, customer growth and an established management team

For our challenge, we are prioritizing solutions in the discovery to validation phases. We will also accept those in the ideation phase, however, we will be looking for a demonstrated commitment to the project from the project lead and/or team.

AWARDS
9. If I'm selected as an Award Recipient, do I have to participate in the Climate Ventures: Earth Tech program? Can I just have the grant?

The goal of this program is to see the technologies identified through the Generation Water Tech Challenge used at scale to see improvements in the scores of our Watershed Reports. Therefore, participation in the Climate Ventures: Earth Tech program by 1-2 people per application is mandatory to receive the award funding. Applicants must be available to participate from January to July 2020.

10. I don't live in Toronto; how can I participate in the Climate Ventures: Earth Tech program?

We want applicants and award recipients from all over Canada! So, this being a tech challenge, we’ll use technology! Mentorship and coaching sessions will happen via video conferencing software. Where possible, CSI will leverage their network to find co-working space for winning teams outside of Toronto. Travel costs to participate in the in-person Demo night will be covered for 1-2 participants per winning team.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY
11. Do I maintain ownership of my Intellectual Property?

Yes, all participants retain ownership of all rights, including intellectual property rights for project submitted to the Generation Energy Challenge. Keep in mind, as intention of this challenge is to create real-world solutions to Canada’s water issues, the open-source and accessible nature of the solution will be considered when evaluating proposals.

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MEET OUR EXPERT ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Dr X 2

Xiaoyuan Geng, Ph. D

Dr X 2
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Xiaoyuan Geng, Ph. D

Dr. Xiaoyuan Geng is the manager and head scientist of Canadian Soil Information Service (CanSIS), Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. With education in the field of soil science and biogeochemistry through BSc. and MSc. years, Xiaoyuan conducted nutrient cycling and ecosystem modeling research and development work. Xiaoyuan contributed to the Boreal Ecosystem and Atmosphere Study (BOREAS) by conducting trace gas emission across boreal forest, including peatland, landscapes using incubation chamber method. Xiaoyuan taught remote sensing and GIS programming courses in University of Alberta and Algonquin college in Canada. He constructed and piloted core specifications of the early versions of the Web Processing Service (WPS) and Table Joining Service (TJS) international standards of Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC). Xiaoyuan developed key data integration and processing algorithms and produced an essential national framework data, Soil Landscapes of Canada. The framework is used for national sustainable metrics modeling, national environmental statistic reporting, international contribution on carbon accounting and environment assessments etc. Through his Ph. D study, Xiaoyuan developed an operational framework for predictive soil mapping in Canada. That framework is being used for national soil and soil landscape data renewal and applications. Presently Xiaoyuan, as one of Canadian representatives of the Global Soil Partnership, is leading a large collaborative effort on national soil and soil landscape data renewal and integrated use for several national applications such as national soil carbon sequestration potential inventory, sustainability metrics, living laboratory, and national ecological good and services reporting.

Marlow Pellat, Ph. D.

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Marlow Pellat, Ph. D

Marlow Pellatt’s role at Parks Canada focuses on using an ecosystem-based management approach to maintaining and restoring the ecological integrity of Canada’s National Parks and National Marine Conservation Areas. In particular his scientific expertise is in paleoecology, conservation ecology, restoration ecology, and coastal ecosystem ecology. Marlow is actively involved in blue carbon initiatives with the tri-national (Canada, Mexico, USA) Commission for Environmental Cooperation. He is also leading a pan-Canadian investigation of blue carbon in Canada’s National Parks and National Marine Conservation Areas.

Alemu Gonsamo

Alemu Gonsamo, Ph.D

Alemu Gonsamo
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Alemu Gonsamo, Ph.D

Dr. Alemu Gonsamo is a Canada Research Chair and an assistant professor of Remote Sensing at the School of Earth, Environment & Society in McMaster University. His research focuses on ground, airborne, and satellite remote sensing of vegetation from the leaf level to the global scale to study plant structural and photosynthetic traits, plant and carbon uptake seasonality, and terrestrial ecosystem primary productivity and greenness. Using long-term global satellite observations, ground measurements and mechanistic computer models, he also studies the impacts of increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations, climate change and variability on terrestrial ecosystems, and related feedbacks to the atmosphere through carbon cycle. His Remote Sensing lab at McMaster University develops improved satellite remote sensing methods and products for terrestrial ecosystems relevant to the global change studies.

Maria Strack

Maria Strack, Ph. D

Maria Strack
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Maria Strack, Ph. D

Maria Strack is a Professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Management at the University of Waterloo and Tier II Canada Research Chair in Ecosystems and Climate. She received her PhD in 2006 from McMaster University where she studied the potential impact of climate change on peatland (wetland with organic soils, or peat) carbon cycling. Since then she has built an innovative and internationally recognized research program that investigates peatland greenhouse gas (GHG) exchange with a particular focus on managed ecosystems, including disturbance impacts and restoration and reclamation outcomes. Dr. Strack currently collaborates on peatland restoration research projects across Canada with partners in the horticultural peat, forestry and oil sands sectors, and government and non-governmental organizations. Results from her research have been incorporated in Canada’s GHG National Inventory Report to the United Nations Convention on Climate Change and she was a lead author on the chapter “Rewetted Organic Soils” in 2013 Supplement to 2006 IPCC Guidelines for National Greenhouse Gas Inventories: Wetlands.

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FAQ

Read answers to frequently asked questions

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Questions?

© iStock / wildnerdpix / WWF-Canada

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CARBON TECH CHALLENGE

FAQs

What technology readiness level are you looking for?

Finalists will be asked to spend a year validating their technology, and final award recipients will be awarded a contract to implement their technology in the field with our conservation partners. As such, we are looking for technologies at readiness levels 4-6. Participants will need to have achieved level 7 by the time the validation phase is over if they are to receive a contract. Learn about technology readiness levels here.

 

How will the projects be evaluated?

All projects will be assessed using the following criteria:

Alignment with the goals of the Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge

Does the technology measure or enable the measurement of carbon in nature (terrestrial, freshwater and/or coastal ecosystems)? Does it target soil, biomass and/or ecosystem level carbon?  Is it applicable at the community-user level? Is the data produced useful for understanding the impacts of Nature-based Climate Solutions? Does it address the barriers to current carbon measurement technologies (i.e., cost, capacity)? Will the approach produce accurate data?

Feasibility of implementing the solution

Does the team/organization have the right expertise to execute the solution? Is the technology likely to work as described? Is the business/revenue model realistic? Are the timelines realistic? What is the likelihood of success?

Openness and accessibility of the solution

Is the solution cost effective? What are the ongoing maintenance costs? How will the team/organization ensure that their solution is affordable for community users? Does the technology require a high level of training/expertise to use? How will training be provided to communities if required? Is there a mechanism by which the team/organization will share their key learnings? Will this technology be open source?

Scalability of the solution

Does the team/organization have a plan to increase uptake/use of their solution? Is it realistic? Does this technology have the potential to contribute to a broader understanding of carbon in nature across Canada, or is the potential limited to a hyperlocal/specific context?

Ecological and social responsibility

Are there any potential negative social or ecological impacts that may be generated by this solution? If so, are satisfactory plans in place to mitigate or reduce these impacts?

Novelty and innovative quality of the solution

Is this a novel technology or novel use of an existing technology that has not been successfully implemented at scale before?
 

Why is the focus on technology that can be used at the community level?

We believe that Indigenous-led conservation is an effective, equitable and efficient way to safeguard nature. As the experts who have been stewarding these lands and waters since time immemorial, Indigenous communities are best positioned to lead the measurement and ongoing monitoring of carbon in their territories. Furthermore, in a country as large as Canada, with many remote areas, we need to use all the tools at our disposal to ensure we have a complete understanding of the state of ecosystems in Canada. Community-based monitoring (CBM), which includes both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, is one of those tools. By catalyzing the development of tools that can be used at the community-level, rather than leaving carbon measurement capabilities to larger institutions, we will build capacity and capability to ensure credible and accurate reporting of the carbon benefits of stewardship activities over time.

 

Will this technology be used in carbon markets and to verify carbon offset projects?

While it is not the primary goal of the Nature X Carbon Tech challenge, it is possible that participating technologies may have applications for carbon markets.

 

Are both English and French-language applications welcome?

Yes, both are welcome! Live interpretation may be provided for pitches, if necessary.

 

Will there be at least one finalist from each stream?

Not necessarily. The streams provide guidance about the types of projects we’re looking for, and help us compare projects. We will be selecting the strongest overall proposals as our finalists. That may mean there will be at least one from each stream, but it’s not a guarantee.

 

Can I talk to someone at WWF-Canada to learn more about Nature-based Climate Solutions or about the Nature X Carbon Tech Challenge?

Sure! If you have any questions, contact us and we'll get in touch.

 

Can I submit more than one idea?

Individuals can only be the lead on one submission; however, you can be listed as a team member on multiple submissions.

 

Innovation vs. invention

When we talk about innovation, we don’t necessarily mean that you’ve invented something new. There are many opportunities to use existing technologies in new and innovative ways. To be eligible for this challenge, you do not need to have created a completely new product (although it’s great if you have). We will also be considering submissions that find a novel approach to using existing technologies to monitor nature-based carbon storage and sequestration.

 

Do I have to participate in the Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship Program?

Finalists do not have to participate in the Microsoft Global Social Entrepreneurship program, but we recommend they do. What we heard most from ventures we’ve worked with in the past is the value they received from entrepreneurship coaching.

 

Do I maintain ownership of my intellectual property?

Yes, all participants retain ownership of all rights, including intellectual property rights for projects submitted to the challenge. However, please keep in mind that a primary intention of this challenge is to create real-world solutions to lower barriers for carbon monitoring, so the open-source and accessible nature of the solution will be considered when evaluating proposals.