City of Vancouver

The City of Vancouver seeks to create a great city of communities that cares about our people, our environment, and our opportunities to live, work, and prosper.

Greenest City:
A Renewable City

We collaborate with residents and businesses to achieve a low-carbon future while building a strong economy and growing Vancouver’s international profile as a forward-thinking city that meets the needs of generations to come.

Challenges:

Targeted Call: Zero Waste Site
Open Call

Targeted Call

Zero Waste Demonstration Site Challenge

The City of Vancouver and Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) are seeking innovators to pilot their zero waste solutions at a new, living Zero Waste Demonstration Site.

Application window:

Nov 23, 2022 - Jan 31, 2023 (11:59PM PDT)

Review schedule:

Shortlisted applicants will be notified by March 31, 2023. Winner(s) will be announced in April or May 2023

Eligibility

  • Low-cost, high impact solutions that help eliminate disposal of solid waste to landfill or incinerator and upcycle materials that are normally recycled
  • While solutions from the Lower Mainland are preferred, we encourage innovators from anywhere in the world to apply

A graphic illustration of what the zero waste  demonstration could look like once operational with several

THE CHALLENGE:
The Challenge: Zero Waste Demonstration Site

An urgent need for Zero Waste solutions

There is an urgent need in Vancouver to identify and implement new waste solutions. The Vancouver Landfill was projected to reach its overall tonnage capacity limit by 2037; however, at current rates of fill, closure could occur earlier, thereby significantly limiting waste disposal options within the Metro Vancouver region. Innovation in zero- and low-waste technologies will be critical to help avoid waste issues and extend landfill capacity.

Vancouver aspires to be a zero waste community by 2040, largely by eliminating the need for solid waste to be disposed of in landfills and incinerators. The City of Vancouver is encouraging the development of innovative technologies that go beyond the status quo to help meet Vancouver’s Zero Waste 2040 goals and extend the service life of the Vancouver Landfill.

The Zero Waste Demonstration Site Challenge will foster innovation to help the City achieve its ambitious zero waste goals and avoid early closure of the Landfill.

The Zero Waste Demonstration Site (ZWDS or the “Site”)

The 0.4-hectare (1.1-acre) Site was formerly a recycling receiving yard located in Vancouver’s southern industrial lands. Moving forward, it will serve as a co-location site for innovators to explore the scaling up of innovative technologies that could reduce waste going to disposal, increase resource recovery, decrease greenhouse gases (GHGs) and increase green jobs in the region. For more information on the Site, please see the Zero Waste Demonstration Site Applicant Onboarding Guide.

The City of Vancouver is seeking zero waste innovators to participate in a low footprint pilot by operating or demonstrating their pilot plants at the Site for up to two years. If deemed successful, the Site could continue into future years and attract more opportunities for innovators, including partnerships, funding and other complementary benefits.

The Challenge

The Zero Waste Demonstration Site Challenge seeks a diverse array of solutions to address various streams of solid waste, compatible with the existing Site layout and infrastructure available, including (but not limited to):

  • Biodegradable waste (e.g. food, kitchen, garden, yard, agricultural)
  • Recyclables (e.g. plastics, metal, paper, glass)
  • Electronic waste (e.g. batteries, lightbulbs, computers, electronics)
  • Construction and demolition (e.g. natural, painted and treated wood; plastics; concrete; asphalt; rubble; soil; debris)
  • Composite waste (e.g. textiles, clothing, shoes, bagged pet waste, furniture)
  • Residuals from industrial processes (e.g. biosolids, grit, bottom ash)
  • Other wastes

With respect to scale or scope, we welcome solutions that are low footprint (minimal infrastructure requirements, e.g. power and water self supplied). The City and VEC will also consider passive (non-operating) displays that demonstrate innovative technologies, such as natural walls or improved concrete products.

Desired Outcome

We envision the Site to house five to 10 zero waste technologies operating or showcasing solutions that, if scaled up, could significantly:

  • Reduce waste going to landfill or incineration.
  • Reduce GHG emissions, including direct and lifecycle (e.g. transportation, processing and decomposition).
  • Be cost-effective to attract investment, strategic partnerships and adoption by the market.
  • Increase green jobs in the region through the development of the solution itself and the ancillary market that supports it (e.g. service providers in the supply chain, such as equipment repair, engineering, office construction).
  • Provide for feasible implementation (e.g. technological, regulatory and administrative feasibility).
  • Demonstrate effectiveness, reliability and climate resiliency.

Opportunity

Innovators selected to demonstrate their technology at the ZWDS will have the opportunity to showcase their solution to potential clients, investors, strategic partners, and other important stakeholders for 18 to 24 months at a safe and secure site.

During this time, and after their residency, innovators may be eligible to leverage the City of Vancouver’s $31 billion brand to increase exposure and open more doors to attract customers, investment and partnerships. If deemed an exemplary resident of the ZWDS, the City and VEC are happy to provide letters of support and references as appropriate to help innovators grow their business within Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada and globally.

Furthermore, engaging the City of Vancouver could potentially lead to an agreement, as outlined in its procurement policy regarding unsolicited proposals. In addition to use of the Site, the City and VEC will endeavour to further support innovators by providing them with in-kind support, comments, feedback and decisions as soon as possible.

Note: all inquiries and proposals must be submitted through the Project Greenlight website. If you have a question, check the FAQ for commonly asked questions; alternatively, you can submit your query using the contact form. Please do not contact members directly.

Evaluation Criteria

Review Process

The Project Greenlight team (composed of sector leads from VEC and Foresight Canada) has standardized all challenge reviews. Proponents should review the eligibility criteria for their specific challenge, as each has its own requirements. Proponents should also closely review the Applicant Onboarding Guide.

 

Additional Resources

Zero Waste Demonstration Site

Call of Innovation

Do you have a zero-waste solution, but need space to pilot your idea? Apply for chance to operate for 18 to 24 months at the ZWDS.

Open Call

Sustainable and Innovative Vancouver

The City of Vancouver is seeking innovations within transportation, waste, and the built environment to bring us closer to reaching our goals related to zero carbon, smart city.

Application window:

November 1 - January 31, 2023 (11:59PM PST)

Review schedule:

Applications are accepted and reviewed on an ongoing basis by the Project Greenlight Team, and reviewed quarterly by City of Vancouver. The City's next review period starts November 1st, 2022

Eligibility

City of Vancouver will give preference to proponents that can demonstrate innovative and reliable functionality as well as scalability.

THE CHALLENGE:
Transportation, Zero Waste, Green Buildings, and Rainwater Management

Green Vancouver: Taking bold climate action

Project Greenlight’s open call process solicits innovative ideas that address complex challenges facing public and private enterprises (“members”). Whether your submission involves an emerging technology you are bringing to market, or a commercially available solution used in an adjacent industry, it must be unique, scalable, and aligned with the City of Vancouver’s strategic priorities.

The City of Vancouver is open to innovative, novel ideas that address key challenges around its sustainability goals and digital priorities (outlined below). Solutions should fall within the key focus areas of transportation, zero waste, green buildings, rainwater management and digital infrastructure. These might include:

Transportation-related solutions, including but not limited to solutions that:
  • Build smarter and greener transportation infrastructure, including solutions that support active transportation and freight (e.g. smart/responsive pathway lighting for parks, e-bike charging stations, EV charging in facilities, curbside management).
  • Enable zero-emissions transportation, such as EV charging retrofits in buildings, curbside management and charging solutions, energy management systems, integration with energy storage or on-site renewables.
Zero-waste solutions, including but not limited to solutions that:
  • Streamline and manage solid waste and organic waste.
  • Conserve natural resources.
  • Reduce waste to landfill and incinerators.
  • Embody circular economy principles, including repair, refurbish, share and reuse of materials before recycling them.
  • Prevent waste, including wasted and inedible food at all points between farm and table.
  • Process waste into compost, fuel or other value-added product.
  • Streamline solid waste collection and disposal systems with a goal to reduce GHGs while creating social and economic benefit (i.e. green jobs).
Building-related solutions, including but not limited to solutions that:
  • Support low-carbon construction requirements of the future, specifically around low embodied carbon construction materials for buildings and low emission equipment on construction sites.
  • Electrify and/or reduce energy and emissions in City-owned and operated buildings and facilities (e.g. advanced or unique heat pumps, novel heat recovery technologies, new envelope technologies).
Rainwater solutions, including but not limited to solutions that:
  • Manage and monitor rainwater runoff from impervious surfaces utilizing various green rainwater infrastructure (GRI) tools (e.g. street rain gardens and infiltration trenches, green walls, smart blue-green roofs) for a variety of building typologies/densities, to help achieve the city’s Rain City Strategy goals.
  • Monitor and manage sewer inflow and infiltration, and reduce the impacts of sanitary sewer overflows.

Desired Outcome

The City of Vancouver would like to pilot innovative, functional, and scalable technologies that align with one or more of its strategic priorities. Successful submissions will demonstrate significant potential to reduce carbon pollution and/or adapt to our changing climate.

Proposals should directly relate to the Climate Emergency Action Plan and/or the Rain City Strategy. Where relevant, they should also align with, and help advance, the Healthy City Strategy and the Digital Strategy. Proponents will need to demonstrate measurable outcomes in achieving these strategies.

Opportunity

Engaging the City of Vancouver could lead to one of the following agreements, as per the City’s procurement policy regarding unsolicited proposals:

  • A proponent demonstrating its solution.
  • The City issuing a call for market responses to the goods and services being offered.
  • The City pursuing the proposal.
  • The City choosing to not pursue the proposal.
  • Another mutually agreed option.

Note: all inquiries and proposals must be submitted through the Project Greenlight website. If you have a question, check the FAQ for commonly asked questions; alternatively, you can submit your query using the Contact Us form. Please do not contact members directly.

Evaluation Criteria

Review Process

The Project Greenlight team (comprised of sector leads from Vancouver Economic Commission and Foresight) has standardized all challenge reviews. Proponents should review the eligibility criteria for their specific challenges, as each has its own requirements. Proponents should also review the Application Handbook [PDF] closely.


 

Additional Resources

City of Vancouver

Call for Innovation

Looking to grow? Partner with the City of Vancouver to deliver solutions that help us achieve our sustainability and innovation goals.

Support

Looking for assistance?

Wondering if your technology is the right fit for City of Vancouver? Have questions about the evaluation process?

Talk to a member of our team using the live chat service in the bottom right corner of this window.
Read through a list of commonly asked questions in the help centre.
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