Established in 2022, the Canadian Bio-Cleantech Applied Research Network (CBARN) is a network of southern Ontario colleges and one university providing research and development, and technical and commercialization support to southern Ontario’s small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the bio-cleantech industry. CBARN is supported by a $3-million Government of Canada investment through the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).
After a very successful inaugural year of driving de-carbonization and fostering a green recovery through innovative solutions within Ontario's bio-cleantech sector, CBARN and its members, Lambton College, Fanshawe College, Mohawk College, Loyalist College and Western University, are set to expand its reach as it enters into its second year.
Year One Highlights
In its first year, CBARN has exceeded expectations already and is set to surpass original targets before the end of the project. CBARN supported 26 companies with their unique projects in its first year. As it enters into its second year of operations, it has 28 ongoing projects with some of them being driven by new businesses and start-ups. These efforts combined with the achievements from the first year showcase the wide range of initiatives from various locations throughout southern Ontario. Approximately 25 percent of these projects are led by new businesses and start-ups, further fueling innovation and entrepreneurial growth in the region.
Fostering Economic Growth and Job Creation
CBARN's impact extends well beyond project milestones. The continued success of the supported ventures has led to the creation of more than 26 permanent full-time jobs related to the projects, and maintained 44 existing jobs.
CBARN has achieved a significant milestone by successfully commercializing or developing and improving 48 new products, services or processes, along with advancements in development technologies within the bio-cleantech sector. These achievements highlight CBARN's dedication to driving innovation and delivering market-ready solutions, further contributing to the growth and impact of clean technologies in the industry.
Empowering the Next Generation
CBARN has contributed to the establishment and maintenance of 79 temporary student and post graduate student positions, providing valuable experience to the next generation of bio-cleantech professionals. This emphasis on workforce development not only benefits the participants but also bolsters the bio-cleantech industry with skilled and future-ready professionals.
Diversity and Inclusion
CBARN’s commitment to providing diversity and inclusion in projects is evident in the active support offered to businesses led by underrepresented groups in the bio-cleantech sector. CBARN is proud to report it is achieving targets of backing SMEs owned or led by underrepresented groups with nearly 40 of the 54 total projects supported being owned or led by underrepresented groups.
CBARN recognizes the value of strategic partnerships in driving innovation and progress. In the second year, CBARN welcomed the esteemed Institute for Chemicals and Fuels from Alternative Resources (ICFAR)of Western University as its fifth member. This collaboration has enriched CBARN's network and further diversified its research capabilities.
Moreover, CBARN has fostered fruitful collaborations with renowned organizations such as MITACS, Bio-Industrial Innovation Canada (BIC)and Guelph University. These partnerships have opened doors to cutting-edge research opportunities and propelled clean growth innovation within the bio-cleantech landscape.
As CBARN enters its second year, it remains steadfast in the commitment to foster a cleaner, greener future for Ontario and beyond. Collaboration with Ontario’s post-secondary institutions continues to be the backbone of CBARN’s progress, empowering partner SMEs to develop and improve commercially viable products and technologies, driving business growth and fostering workforce skill diversification.
CBARN's impressive progress and significant achievements have been made possible by the invaluable contributions and steadfast support of the network’s partners and supporters. Their commitment has been instrumental in driving a greener, more sustainable future in the bio-cleantech sector.