Government of Canada launches $1.5-billion Clean Fuels Fund with call for proposals

Woman in hardhat, wind turbines, hydrogen production facility
Image: NRCan

Fund supports building or expanding clean fuel production facilities, including hydrogen, with project completions required by March 31, 2026.

JUNE 25, 2021 – Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) is making a significant investment in clean, low-carbon fuel projects as part of the country’s efforts to combat climate change.

Minister of Natural Resources Seamus O’Regan announced a call for clean fuel project proposals, June 21, during the World Hydrogen Technologies Convention.

As part of last April’s federal budget, the government committed $1.5 billion, over five years, for a Clean Fuels Fund designed to increase Canada’s capacity to produce clean fuels, grow the Canadian clean fuels market and support the implementation of a clean fuels standard. The announcement mentions clean hydrogen, advanced biofuels, renewable natural gas and sustainable aviation fuel as the energy types the fund will help to develop.

The announcement did not specifically mention nuclear’s role in Canadian clean fuel production however, nuclear as a contributor to hydrogen production is identified in the SMR (small modular reactor) roadmap.

Some Canadian nuclear generating utilities and SMR vendors are exploring nuclear’s role in hydrogen production.

Earlier this month, the Nuclear Innovation Institute’s Bruce Power Centre for Next Generation Nuclear announced Canada’s first-ever feasibility study to evaluate the technical viability and business case for hydrogen production from nuclear power.

The government’s call for project proposals to increase clean fuel production capacity is open until Sept. 29. NRCan will provide funding through conditionally repayable contribution agreements of up to 30 per cent of the total eligible project costs, to a maximum of $150 million, per project.

The call for proposals is open to electricity or gas utilities, Canadian academic institutions, Indigenous organizations or communities, research associations, among others.

To qualify, projects must be completed and facilities commissioned by March 31, 2026.

Last year, the Government of Canada launched its Hydrogen Strategy for Canada to spur investment and partnerships to establish the country as a global supplier of hydrogen.

Click here to read the full NRCan Clean Fuels Fund announcement.