The Government of Canada will award more than $344 million in funding to suport five new critical minerals programs and initiatives. The five are:
Critical Minerals Technology and Innovation Program. $144.4 million for the research, development, demonstration, commercialization and adoption of new technologies and processes that support sustainable growth in Canadian critical minerals value chains and associated innovation ecosystems.
Critical Minerals Geoscience and Data Initiative. $79.2 million to enhance the quality and availability of data and digital technologies to support geoscience and mapping that will accelerate the efficient and effective development of Canadian critical minerals value chains, including by identifying critical minerals reserves and developing pathways for sustainable mineral development.
Global Partnerships Program. $70 million to strengthen Canada’s global leadership role in enhancing critical minerals supply chain resiliency through international collaborations related to critical minerals.
Northern Regulatory Initiative. $40 million to advance Canada’s northern and territorial critical minerals agenda by supporting regulatory dialogue, regional studies, land-use planning, impact assessments and Indigenous consultation.
Renewal of the Critical Minerals Center of Excellence (CMCE). $10.6 million so the CMCE can continue the ongoing development and implementation of the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy.
Further program details, including a call for proposals, will be announced in the coming months. The programs and initiatives build on previous investments that support critical minerals research and development. Investments under the Canadian Critical Minerals Strategy will support a range of industrial activities, from geoscience and exploration to mineral processing, manufacturing and recycling applications, including support for research, development and technological deployment.
Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson also announced the approval of six projects under the Critical Minerals Research, Development and Demonstration (CMRDD) program while at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) 2023 Convention. The CMRDD program aims to advance the commercial readiness of emerging processing technologies that will support the development of value chains for zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) in Canada.
These six projects represent a total investment of more than $14 million and aim to validate the feasibility, viability and replicability of processing technologies by conducting pilot demonstrations. The outcomes will see improved capital and/or operating costs of critical mineral production, the production of critical minerals using novel processes and reduced energy or carbon intensity or other environmental performance improvements.
The funding through the CMRDD program includes:
$795,524 for Sherritt International
$3,545,000 for E3 Lithium
$724,871 for FPX Nickel Corporation
$5,000,000 for Search Minerals
$3,000,000 for Geomega Resources
$1,074,000 for Prairie Lithium