While COVID-19 has taken much of humanity’s attention over the last two years, climate change remains the greatest challenge we face as a species.
Like a pandemic, climate change could dramatically alter life. Unlike a pandemic, the negative impact of climate change is not easy to see and the solution to the problem isn’t as simple as caution and vaccination.
The solution is global in nature – it requires greater collaboration than ever before to achieve significant reductions in carbon emissions, which may come from conservation, renewable and low-emissions energy, electric vehicles and new modes of transportation, as well as the wide variety of new technologies that make all of these things possible.
It’s a problem facing all of humanity and the people of Waterloo are great at solving problems.
Companies in Waterloo – and post-secondary research centres – are working diligently on problems of efficiency, conservation and more. This work is happening across sectors. For example, we have a large collection of companies working in sustainable transportation – everything from traffic-flow monitoring to electric vehicle analytics to hyperloop research. We have companies working in cleantech, energy storage, electric drivetrains, renewable energy, waste diversion and zero waste, green buildings, green manufacturing and environmental monitoring.
In fact, when we partnered with Sustainable Waterloo Region, WR Community Energy and the Region of Waterloo to produce a Clean Economy Ecosystem Map, we found that 120+ companies were working on clean solutions.
These companies are drawing on one of the world’s best tech workforces – CBRE named Waterloo the #1 small tech talent market in North America in 2021. They’re also drawing on one of Canada’s largest workforces – the 4th largest, specifically – and the incredible base of knowledge that comes from working in Canada’s largest robotics and automation cluster. When you combine tech and manufacturing the way Waterloo does, special things can happen.
We also found 24 research centres at the University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and Conestoga College tackling sustainable aeronautics, recycling technologies, sustainable energy and so much more. For companies looking to innovate, you won’t find a more diverse or willing set of partners anywhere else.