Commitment funds circular economy initiative helping regional enterprises address climate change challenges
Guelph, Ont., November 7, 2022 – Circular Opportunity Innovation Launchpad (COIL) has received a $250,000 donation from Desjardins Group to support the work of its new Climate and Circularity Solutions Hub.
The Hub, which launched in October, applies circular economy principles to provide expertise, research and strategies to help regional businesses and community organizations adopt actions to reduce carbon emissions and tackle climate change.
The circular economy has been identified as a primary strategy in Canada’s climate action plan, which sets bold targets to reduce emissions by 40 per cent by 2030 and achieve Net-Zero Emissions by 2050. The plan highlights that the path to a resilient future requires the adoption of clean technologies and resource efficient approaches that underpin a circular economy.
Leveraging COIL’s existing regional networks, infrastructure and expertise, the Hub develops and shares specific strategies that reduce waste, create new value streams, and introduce more climate-friendly processes in business operations. It supports new learning opportunities such as the Circular Leadership Program in partnership with the Ivey Business School Centre for Building sustainable Value, and the evaluation and measurement of circular approaches that maximize emission reductions.
”Our co-operative values are guided by the unwavering belief that economic development should drive social progress and help improve the quality of life for local communities and the environment. There is no planet B,” said Guy Cormier, President and CEO of Desjardins Group. “We are proud to support COIL’s Climate and Circularity Solutions Hub which will help businesses grow and integrate more sustainable and environmentally conscious practices.”
In 2016, Desjardins created GoodSpark Fund and committed to investing $250 million by 2024 in socially transformative projects created by and for the community. Through the fund, Desjardins awards grants to initiatives and sectors that impact communities the most, like employment, economic vitality, education and the environment. So far, the GoodSpark Fund has supported more than 600 initiatives.
“Desjardin’s donation is an incredible example of corporate leadership supporting community-led climate action,” said David Messer, Executive Director, Smart Cities Office.
“Our comprehensive circular economy approach considers not only the reuse, recovery and recycling of materials that were previously wasted, it addresses processes and decisions that prevent waste generation across an entire value chain. With Desjardin’s generous commitment we will be able to complete research and demonstration projects that will accelerate this work.”
“This is an incredible example of private sector and government working together to tackle critical global issues like climate change. It’s inspiring to see a major national corporation recognize the value in the transformative work that is happening in the City of Guelph and across southern Ontario.”
Scott Stewart, Chief Administrative Officer, City of Guelph
About Circular Opportunity Innovation Launchpad (COIL)
Launched in April 2021 with $5 million in funding from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), COIL is an innovation platform and activation network aimed at creating, proving and scaling transformative solutions across the food and environment sectors in southern Ontario that will move Canada toward a more sustainable, circular economy.
COIL builds on the Our Food Future Smart Cities initiative which is close to meeting its goal of creating 50 new circular businesses and collaborations.
Funding for COIL program participants is provided in collaboration with 10C’s Harvest Impact Fund, a community social finance fund developer with Our Food Future aimed at supporting impactful projects to strengthen the Guelph and Wellington communities.
About Desjardins Group
Desjardins Group is the largest cooperative financial group in North America and the fifth largest cooperative financial group in the world, with assets of $391 billion. It was named one of the Canada’s Top 100 Employers by MediaCorp. To meet the diverse needs of its members and clients, Desjardins offers a full range of products and services to individuals and businesses through its extensive distribution network, online platforms and subsidiaries across Canada. Ranked among the world’s strongest banks according to The Banker magazine, Desjardins has one of the highest capital ratios and credit ratings in the industry.
Photograph from event – caption:
Billy Boucher, General Manager and Chief Operating Officer, Desjardins Ontario Credit Union; Francine Côté, Chair of the Board, Desjardins Ontario Credit Union; David Messer, Executive Director, Smart Cities Office; Guy Cormier, President and CEO of Desjardins Group; Andrew Telfer, Collaboration and Development Lead, COIL; Ronald Corbett, Regional Vice-President, Toronto and Southwestern Ontario, Desjardins Ontario Credit Union
Climate and Circularity Solutions Hub Logo
David Messer, Executive Director
Smart Cities Office, Office of the Chief Administrative Officer
City of Guelph
519-822-1260 extension 3661