UBC BioProducts Institute Awarded over $3.5M in Government Support

The UBC BioProducts Institute (BPI) has been awarded $3.5 million from Pacific Economic Development Canada to support the creation of high value bioproducts from BC forest waste and residues.

This funding will support the development, scale-up, and production of sustainable bioproducts, such as filters, adhesives, and lightweight textiles, by helping de-risk technologies and foster the commercialization of bioproducts and solutions. Using waste and residue from B.C. forests, this approach will create alternatives to plastic-based, single use products.

“Scaling up development of high-value, bio-based materials from cellulose and lignin will generate economic and social benefits for BC and increase the long-term competitiveness of its forest sector,” said BPI scientific director Dr. Orlando Rojas, a professor of chemical and biological engineering and Canada Excellence Research Chair in Bioproducts at UBC. “UBC’s BioProducts Institute, together with the BioAlliance and industry partners, is working on catalyzing the diversification of the forest industry into sustainable markets.”

The pulp and paper sector has faced global competitive challenges in recent years, and pulp and paper mills in B.C. must continue to innovate to stay competitive. UBC’s BioProducts Institute is ranked in the top three globally in its field. It will help mills in the province become bioproduct or biorefinery mills, creating sustainable materials for use in the medical field, personal care, filtration, crop protection, and other industries.

BioProducts researchers experimenting with lightweight textiles/marchfelder

The Government of Canada is committed to supporting sustainable growth by investing in B.C. businesses and by reducing our environmental footprint. This project aligns with the federal government’s priorities of clean technology development, advance manufacturing, and natural resources value-added processing while contributing to the advancement of the circular and renewable economy and the growth of B.C.’s bio-innovation ecosystem.

“Innovative research at the BioProducts Institute and other areas at UBC is driving the growth of sustainable technologies and products that can mitigate climate change impacts and address other social and economic challenges. This investment from the federal government will leverage UBC’s research strength to accelerate the creation of sustainable bioproducts and support the forest industry and clean technology sector right here in B.C., and across Canada.”  – Professor Santa Ono, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of British Columbia

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