2023 Accelerating to Zero Grant Recipients

Akoma Holdings: Installing Electric Vehicle Charging Stations at Akoma  

Grant award: $10,000 

Akoma is a Black-led, Black-run, and Black-serving organization with 320 acres of land holdings in the Cherrybrook, Westphal, Lake Loon area. They will be installing two EV charging stations on site to help green the property and educate the surrounding community on the value of green energy as a part of their overall development plan. 

Climate Focus: Climate Story Network  

Grant award: $43,000 

The Climate Story Network (CSN) is dedicated to getting stories, information, and inspiration on climate change – especially climate solutions – to community-level media in Halifax/Kjipuktuk. Far too often we expect people to seek out information on climate solutions themselves. CSN will deliver relatable, accessible, and hopeful climate stories directly to community media, newsletters, and localized social platforms. They will offer professionally written and edited, no-cost, and copyright-free articles, local champion profiles, and backgrounders on climate change to community, alternative, and urban media, non-profit newsletters, First Nations publications, university newspapers, online curators, and faith bulletins. 

Dalhousie University School of Planning: [Em]powering Communities: A Review of Participation, Inclusivity, Equity, and Support within Solar City 

Grant award: $49,506 

This project will assess Halifax Regional Municipality’s (HRM) flagship renewable energy program, Solar City. Centred around participation, inclusivity, equity (including reconciliation), and support (i.e., PIES), the project proponent will review the program thus far and collect new mixed methods data to assess these outcomes. To ensure the project benefits and is representative of the diversity within the Municipality, the study will be conducted in partnership with community groups from the Mi’kmaw and African Nova Scotian communities. The aim is to provide HRM with an independent analysis and policy recommendations that identify pathways toward a just low-carbon energy transition for the municipality. 

The Deanery Project: Climate Action Living Lab 

Grant award: $50,000 

The Deanery’s Climate Action Living Lab (CALL) is a demonstration and field research project, as well as an interdisciplinary framework that aims to accelerate communities’ understanding of low-impact and regenerative opportunities for the built environment, agriculture, and our oceans to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions. It takes an intersectoral approach to community engagement, education and hands-on learning with the goal of sharing long-term carbon reduction solutions that are scalable and replicable. Equity and two-eyed seeing sit at the heart of CALL, as it does with all the Deanery’s work. 

Ecology Action Centre: Pop-Up Bike Hub 

Grant award: $24,000 

The EAC’s Pop-Up Bike Hub (PUBH) supports active transportation in equity-deserving communities. Driven by the needs and desires of communities to have accessible bicycle repair spaces, the project supports sustainable transportation options by getting people back on bikes by providing access to bike tools, free basic repairs, and safe cycling education programming. A fundamental component of the program is not only providing a bike repair service and knowledge, but also building relationships and capacity within the communities. This program aims to increase access to cycling resources and opportunities in Mi’kmaw and African Nova Scotian communities in Nova Scotia. 

Halifax Chamber of Commerce: Supporting Nova Scotia SMEs in the Move to Net Zero 

Grant award: $10,000 

The world is changing, and the move to net zero will happen, but it must be an economic opportunity as well as an environmental one if it is to be sustainable. Our small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can and want to take advantage of both, but they need help from an educational and business support perspective. In many cases, small businesses in Nova Scotia have neither the understanding nor resources to make it happen. The Halifax Chamber of Commerce seeks to understand their perspective, determine what resources are needed, and begin to help them on this journey. 

Hope Blooms: Solar Tracker to Power Hope Blooms Building and Automated Irrigation System 

Grant award: $34,000 

Through this project, Hope Blooms will install a solar tracker that will offer 110% of the power needed for their Global Kitchen for Social Change, which is used by hundreds of people in the community, as well as power a new automated solar irrigation system for their gardens. Hope Blooms engages youth in the high-needs community of North End Halifax to become change agents. They create innovative environments for long-term impact on food security, education, social inclusion and disrupting the cycle of poverty. 

Music Declares Emergency: Developing the Music Industry as a Leader in Clean Transportation 

Grant award: $30,000 

This project aims to use the power of music to promote the cultural change needed to create a better, more regenerative future while working to reduce emissions in transportation, especially audience travel and musicians touring. The project intends to activate, organize, and mobilize music fans to use more sustainable transportation to get to shows and concerts and to lay the groundwork for a Zero Emissions touring project for Halifax-based musicians. The project will include the development of a bicycle-powered music festival and promote the bicycle-powered stage at events in Halifax/Kjipuktuk and beyond. 

Net Zero Atlantic and Lara Ryan Consulting: Building to Zero Exchange (BtZx) 

Grant award: $50,000 

This project will move the Building to Zero Exchange to its next stage of development. A feasibility study in 2022-23 engaged over 75 stakeholders to assess the interest in and need for a centre of green building excellence in Nova Scotia. The envisioned collaborative model organization will support the sector and others who are committed to net-zero market transformation by showcasing leadership, inspiring local innovation, and promoting collaboration, equity and workforce opportunities in the low-carbon transition. In this phase of work, project partners, including the Construction Association of Nova Scotia, Dalhousie University, Province of Nova Scotia, HRM, EfficiencyOne, Clean Foundation, and the Nova Scotia Community College, will develop a governance structure and engage in strategic planning to lay the foundations for the organization, leading to a launch event in the early fall.  

North Brewing: Closed-Loop Pressurized CO2 Capture and Re-use 

Grant award: $20,000 

This project will design, implement and test a small but scalable system to capture and re-use brewery process CO2 to close the loop of purchasing industrial CO2 for regular everyday brewing process steps. 

One North End: Empowering and Mobilizing African Nova Scotian (ANS) Communities for Climate Action 

Grant award: $45,000 

This project will continue to work with 15+ African Nova Scotians trained to host climate change conversations in their respective communities. They will help communities identify barriers to becoming low-carbon communities and introduce them to One North End’s network of resources to help them mobilize to become “net-zero” communities. To make it exciting and relevant for the communities, One North End will work with Next Ride to offer community members a chance to test drive a Tesla and other electric cars.  

Planetary Technologies: Halifax Area Climate Change Empowerment (HACCE) 

Grant award: $35,000 

Planetary Technologies is on a mission to protect and restore the ocean and climate for generations to come through an ocean-based carbon removal technology. In advance of their planned CO2 removal project for Tufts Cove in September 2023, Planetary will be working with community engagement and content experts to effectively engage community groups, including fishing communities, Indigenous communities, and local conservation groups. The aim is to learn from these communities as Planetary rolls out this removal project so it can successfully address the needs of local stakeholders and rightsholders as its work scales up. 

Rimot: Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry Emissions Reduction Analysis 

Grant award: $48,250 

The current fleet of ferries serving the Halifax-Dartmouth routes are diesel-powered. A fleet consumes 1 million litres of diesel fuel and contributes 2650 tonnes of CO2 to the environment annually. Preliminary indications suggest it is viable for the ferries to go electric. This data-driven analysis project will determine the actual fuel consumption and emissions under various operating modes to inform a transition to electric and identify changes to existing operations to save fuel and reduce CO2 emissions with the current vessels until they are converted. 

Zen Electric: Zen Electric–MSVU Clean Energy and Transportation Pilot Program 

Grant award: $50,000 

This project intends to support a clean energy and transportation pilot program by providing e-bikes on the Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU) campus. In this program, a solar shed would be constructed with high-efficiency solar panels, state-of-the-art inverters and battery pack (~15 kWh) to store solar energy and charge 15 electric bikes, enabling a net-zero system. These e-bikes will be offered to all students via a rental/lease model to reduce reliance on public transit and cars. These e-bikes and solar-powered battery packs reduce GHG emissions, resolve parking issues and offer affordable transportation for students. It raises awareness about electric transportation and helps students learn about the latest battery technology. 

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