BC Clean-Tech Scores Big with Pre-Commercial Products

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An open letter from 50 CEOs of BC clean-tech firms calling for billions in spending from Ottawa wasn’t enough to make the federal government blanch earlier this month.

Leading up to March’s Globe 2016 sustainability conference, business leaders implored Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to strike a working group, develop a national clean-tech strategy and increase spending on technology still under development.

Days later, five signatories creating potentially game-changing technology collected an extra $30 million in federal funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC).

“All of these types of programs give investors confidence because you have a number of different, very well-informed organizations digging into the technology and doing their own due diligence,” said (former) Inventys CEO André Boulet, whose Burnaby-based clean-tech firm was awarded $3.1 million.

While chemical solvents known as amines serve as the backbone for most carbon capture technology, Svante Inc. (formerly Inventys Thermal Technologies) has developed a device that uses solid material known as adsorbents to absorb and redistribute carbon.


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“It is empowering to know, given my Alberta heritage, our technology can change the climate impacts of the Alberta oil sands regions and generate significant additional economic benefits.”

Brett Henkel

Co-Founder and Vice President Strategic Accounts & Government Affairs

Brett Henkel’s unabashed optimism tempered by his mechanical engineering background and gas separation experience combine to bring a rare perspective to his position on Svante’s executive team.

Transferring the company’s breakthrough CO2 capture technology to customers’ sites will rely heavily on Brett’s strengths for identifying and understanding the technical and business details and relating those details to partners’ teams, approving agencies, and stakeholders.

As co-founder, he was instrumental in creating the process and the hardware used to prove the technology’s effectiveness as well as mobilizing external support throughout the path to becoming a successful innovation. These experiences strengthened his knowledge of business development and program management priorities.

Prior to launching Svante, Mr. Henkel was the program manager for QuestAir Technologies’ compact hydrogen production system with its partner, ExxonMobil. He is credited with designing the world’s first solenoid-driven rapid pressure swing adsorption test station.

Brett received his Bachelor of Science in Physics, with distinction, and a Mechanical Engineering degree from the University of Victoria.

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