Vancouver based renewable energy software startup Clir Renewables announced as a recipient of funding from Sustainable Development Technology Canada

As Seen In: North American Clean Energy

VANCOUVER, BC: Climate change is the largest existential threat to the world today. Changing climates and extreme weather brings changes to ecosystems that are often destructive such as hurricanes, typhoons, blizzards, and floods. Climate change is caused by the unnatural amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. According to studies by The World Resources Institute and the EPA, the largest contributor to those greenhouse gases is the energy sector. To mitigate the effects of climate change, innovation in the energy sector is imperative.

Renewable energy has been exponentially growing in recent years and with this growth has come major technological improvements. Wind turbines are larger and more efficient than ever before and are now the cheapest source of new electricity generation. Although hardware in the renewables industry has seen massive improvements, turbines are still underperforming. Wind turbines are highly complex machines and optimizing their control parameters to maximize the energy production of a wind farm requires lengthy technical analysis. To date, analysis has mostly been performed by consultants and engineers. The work consultants and engineers do undoubtedly help the turbines perform well. The issue in the industry is that the suite of information required to optimize turbines goes beyond the ability of individuals.

Gareth Brown was a consultant in the wind industry for 10 years, repeatedly witnessing the problem of under performing turbines.  He wanted to find a way to address turbine optimization in a scalable way. His solution was to create software that incorporates machine learning with domain expertise so detailed technical analysis can be supported by technological development. With this, the vision for Clir Renewables was born and in early 2017 Gareth formed a team of renewable energy and software experts to build a tool that would allow for creative destruction in the renewable energy industry.

Among others, one of the major challenges for a new company is cash flow and financing. Clir Renewables has been fortunate to receive funding and support from Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC). SDTC helps Canadian entrepreneurs accelerate the development and deployment of globally competitive clean technology solutions. Clir Renewables is dedicated to addressing climate change by creating software that will increase energy production of renewable energy assets. The funding from SDTC enables Clir Renewables to commercialize the software tools, bringing this crucial new technology to the marketplace.

Zoë Kolbuc, Vice President, Partnerships at Sustainable Development Technology Canada said, “SDTC is thrilled to support Clir Renewables as they make wind power even more efficient by leveraging the power of data and automation to optimize energy production. This is a great example of how cleantech is disrupting, and improving renewable energy production.”

“It is great for our software to get this support from SDTC as a step in the right direction in the fight against climate change. The more energy that can be produced from sustainable sources reduces the dependency on fossil fuels for energy generation,” said Jake Gray, COO of Clir Renewables.

Clir has been operating for two years from its head office in Vancouver and this year expanded into Europe with a UK office. In those two years, the company has gone from strength to strength working on over 2GW of assets, and staff numbers have increased threefold.