GHG Environmental Priority Area Update

Use Your Ecomagination

COSIA have been working closely with GE and Alberta Innovates to develop a series of open innovation challenges through GE’s ecomagination campaign.

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Wayne Hillier

Wayne Hillier
Director, Greenhouse Gases (GHG) EPA

The GHG EPA spent the first half of 2014 setting the groundwork for innovation. We identified and prioritized opportunity areas and gaps for in situ operations, then identified projects and studies to help fill those gaps. This process set the direction of the work member companies will do to accelerate environmental performance improvement in Canada’s oil sands. With all of this in place through our accelerated work plan, the second half on this year has been, and will continue to be, spent collaborating on joint industry projects (JIPs).

In 2014 our member companies began 26 new projects. In the same year the EPA completed 12 projects. The GHG EPA will enter 2015 with 26 active projects. That’s more than double the number of projects companies have completed since the GHG EPA’s inception! To date the EPA has 12 completed projects and shared a total of 124 technologies.

The members of the GHG EPA have been reaching out to think tanks and other innovative organizations like GE, Alberta Innovates and the Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation (CCEMC) to form partnerships to help identify technologies that fit into one of the following three categories:

  • Incremental Improvements Technologies that fit into this category will help us make gains in reducing GHGs at our members’ operations in the short term. We often describe these technologies as the “low-hanging fruit.”
  • Transformative Technologies These are “game-changing” technologies or concepts that are in development in other sectors around the world and have the potential to drastically reduce GHG emissions across the oil sands industry.
  • New ideas Sometimes the most revolutionary technologies have yet to be discovered or even thought of. By bringing experts from different disciplines and points of view together we can start to develop innovative technology concepts that combine ideas and knowledge from across those different disciplines. It is conversations and partnerships like these that truly define what it means to collaborate and sets COSIA apart from other alliances.

In order to help mobilize the minds and resources of external stakeholders and global solutions providers, we have identified a number of COSIA Challenges that explicitly state the innovation requirements to fill the identified gaps in knowledge and technology within the GHG EPA. If filled, these Gaps will ultimately support the achievement of our Aspiration. These COSIA Challenges are similar in format to GE’s ecomagination challenge; however technology ideas can be submitted directly to COSIA via the Environmental Technology Assessment Portal (E-TAP).

Learn more about COSIA Challenges.