B.C. technology improves soil health information
April 13, 2022
VANCOUVER – Advanced soil-sensing technology and software is being developed and refined in British Columbia to give farmers, investors and others accurate measurements of soil carbon and a more detailed understanding of soil health.
This technology, being developed by Terramera, a Vancouver-based agriculture technology firm, will enable development of the emerging low-carbon marketplace to help meet British Columbia’s emissions- reduction goals.
“B.C. is home to a growing clean-energy sector and accounts for nearly 35% of Canada’s world-leading clean-tech firms that are having positive impacts globally,” said Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation. “Terramera demonstrates the kind of innovative thinking that sows the seeds for a wide adoption of technologies critical to meeting the Province’s climate goals. This funding is the irrigation that allows cutting-edge ideas to bloom.”
Regenerative farming practices have the potential to enable carbon sequestration, however, soil carbon content is currently not easy to accurately quantify. With $1 million in funding from the Province’s Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund, and additional support from Sustainable Development Technology Canada, Terramera is developing low-cost soil-health and soil carbon quantification technology using proprietary sensors, imaging and data analytics as part of a larger platform called the Terramera Intelligence Engine. The project will lead to healthier, more resilient farmland, as farmers are incented to incorporate sustainable agriculture practices into their operations, which will improve the health of farm soils. Revenue for Terramera will be generated as farmers and landowners sell carbon credits in the emerging global carbon marketplace.
“Thank you to the BC Innovative Clean Energy Fund for recognizing this incredible opportunity to both reduce atmospheric carbon and support farmers improving soil health and resiliency,” said Karn Manhas, founder and CEO of Terramera. “This supports the project we began with SDTC, building on Terramera’s expertise to deploy advanced, in-field soil sampling and carbon quantification technology in B.C. and eventually around the world. We look forward to getting these important tools in fields this year.”
The Innovative Clean Energy (ICE) Fund was established in 2007 to support B.C.’s clean-energy sector and support the production of clean, renewable-energy technologies, reducing costs and helping to preserve the environment by lowering the consumption of fossil fuels.
This initiative aligns with CleanBC, the Province’s plan to expand and accelerate climate action, building on the province’s natural advantages of abundant, clean electricity, high-value natural resources and a highly skilled workforce. It sets a path for increased collaboration to build a British Columbia that works for everyone.
- Incorporated in 2010, Terramera is headquartered in Vancouver and has more than 120 employees.
- Since 2008, the ICE Fund has committed approximately $110 million to support pre-commercial clean-energy technology projects, clean-energy vehicles, research and development, and energy-efficiency programs.
- ICE funding is derived from a levy on the sale of specified energy products – currently natural gas, fuel oil and propane distribution systems.
- ICE Fund partners have included First Nations, universities, municipalities and many emerging clean-tech companies throughout British Columbia.
- ICE-funded technology projects have included bioenergy, solar, ocean-tidal, geo-exchange, desalination, energy-management, smart grid and waste-to-energy.
- Projects funded by Sustainable Development Technology Canada are part of the federal-provincial Joint Call Partnership launched in March 2017 to support the development of pre-commercial clean-energy projects and technologies.
To learn more about Terramera, visit: https://www.terramera.com/
To learn more about the Innovative Clean Energy Fund, visit: https://www.gov.bc.ca/innovativecleanenergyfund
CleanBC: Roadmap to 2030: https://cleanbc.gov.bc.ca/
Ministry of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation
Connect with the Province of B.C. at: news.gov.bc.ca/connect