Sowing $1.2 million seeds for tech adoption

Plus, COVID-19 sanitization in Calgary and Edmonton

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Welcome to this week's Sunday Briefing. In this issue, read about a provincial investment to encourage agtech adoption, plus 15 other stories you may have missed. Have a great day. We'll see you again on Wednesday.

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Sowing $1.2 million seeds for tech adoption

Source: University of Calgary

Home, home on the range; where the robotics, AI, and smart devices play. Alright, not the catchiest tune. But what is music to some Albertans’ ears? A $1.2 million grant from the Government of Alberta to support the adoption of digital technologies in Alberta agriculture.

The Alberta Government, through the Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation, bestowed a grant of $1.2 million to the Simpson Centre for Food and Agricultural Policy at the School of Public Policy, University of Calgary, marking the genesis of the Alberta Digitalization Agriculture (ABDIAG) program.

“This is an exciting program that will help producers and policy-makers develop ideas that will increase the adoption of agricultural digital technologies. This program will support the competitiveness and innovation of Alberta’s agriculture industry,” said Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation RJ Sigurdson.

The program may have been officially launched earlier this month, but it’s already underway — and has been since October 2023. ABDIAG explores challenges and opportunities related to the digitalization of agriculture with a clear goal: to develop policy recommendations fostering data management and enhancing transparency in the agri-food space. The program focuses on leveraging advancements in robotics, artificial intelligence, and smart devices to transform the agricultural landscape. The program also addresses five key challenges: awareness of available technologies, return on investment for tech adoption, data literacy for producers, structural capacities, and policy prioritization.

The program concludes June 2026.


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🤝 Funding, Deals, and Partnerships

  • Rogers Collaborates with CableLabs to Develop Industry-Leading Network Technology for Canadians. Located in Calgary at Rogers Barlow campus, CableLabs North will bring together global industry partners and Rogers technologists to collaborate on network technology solutions. Rogers

  • TELUS investing $135 million in Calgary. Investment to focus on building next-generation networks, fuelling innovation and sustainability, and driving economic growth. TELUS

  • Stakeholders sign on to $52M Alberta First Nation solar project. Alexander First Nation, First Nation Power Development (FNpower), Concord Green Energy (a subsidiary of Concord Pacific) and the Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) have reached financial close on the Tilley Solar Project located southeast of Calgary in Newell, Alta. on Treaty 7 Territory. Construct Connect

  • Volt Carbon Technologies Announces $700,000 Private Placement. The company intends to use the proceeds of the offering to pay outstanding payables, purchase additional equipment to advance battery and mineral separation technology, evaluate and potentially option additional mineral claims and for working capital. Volt Technologies

  • Exro and SEA Electric Announce Completion of Merger. The transaction was approved at a special meeting of shareholders of Exro held on April 4, 2024. Exro


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📰 Need To Know

  • Parker: Calgary-based ZayZoon gives employees access to earned wages to ease financial stress. ADP awarded ZayZoon Partner of the Year 2023, recognizing its exceptional contributions to helping companies improve financial well-being, increase productivity and retain top talent. Calgary Herald

  • University of Alberta develops sanitization tech to kill COVID-19 virus. A new sanitization product aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19 will soon be used in Edmonton and Calgary. CTV News

  • Housing, corporation taxation: What the latest federal budget means for Calgary. Going to Calgary through Ottawa's housing accelerator fund will be $228 million. CTV News

  • Opinion: It's not an either-or situation between trades and tech. There is no reason continuing to extract our remaining carbon resources means we can’t also be leaders in pulling future energy from the wind and sun. Calgary Herald

  • What Alberta Innovates learned from sending 50 local startups to SXSW. According to Tim Murphy, vice president of Alberta Innovates’ health division, the crown corporation had a clear objective going into this year’s conference. Betakit

  • Growing the benefits of digital tech in agriculture. It’s never been more critical to support ag-tech research and collaboration among producers and policy makers to examine how new technologies can be adopted in the agricultural sector. Northeast Now

  • UCalgary prof to lead thought-provoking discussion on AI-inspired research and human identity. Innovations in the artificial-intelligence (AI) world have been accelerating almost by the day, creating very real challenges to the way we make informed decisions. University of Calgary

  • Calgary has a growing tech sector, and one of its hubs is a fancy parking lot. You know that snazzy parkade near the downtown library? It's part of a maturing tech sector in what's traditionally an oil and gas town. CBC News

  • Wind, solar operators urged to invest now to protect against extreme weather risks. As renewable power grows to make up a greater proportion of overall electricity generation, the industry will need to consider whether their infrastructure is prepared for a changing climate. Canadian Press

  • Innovator of the Week: TuffHill eBikes Created a Made-For-Calgary E-Bike. Co-founder Sean Tuff created pedal-assist e-bikes built for Calgary’s weather, and advocates for better bike infrastructure in the city. Avenue Calgary

  • Research innovation boosts sustainability in energy industry. On a frigid morning in southern Alberta, a single pumpjack rolls on the horizon before coming to a stop, the rhythmic metal whine dissolves into the quiet of the snowy prairies. SAIT

  • UCalgary geomatics professor named Institute of Navigation Fellow. Dr. Susan Skone recognized for her research, contributions and selfless service. University of Calgary

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