Racing to Change the Future of Youth Mental Health

Boy teenager gives interview to woman psychologist in office

More than 6,500 participants took a giant step forward for youth mental health today, crossing the finish line both virtually and in person for the 10th anniversary of RBC Race for the Kids in Toronto. Collectively they raised $2.1 million in support of Family Navigation Project (FNP) at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre. Founded in 2013, FNP has changed the lives of thousands of youth with mental illness and/or addiction concerns and their families by connecting them with the specialized services they urgently need.         

Quick Facts

  • The 2022 RBC Race for the Kids marked the first-in person race since 2019, giving supporters the opportunity to participate in-person with a 5km walk/run at Mel Lastman Square or virtually from where ever they choose.
  • The RBC Race for the Kids in Toronto, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary, has attracted more than 74,000 participants and raised a total of over $20 million to date for Sunnybrook’s Family Navigation Project (FNP).
  • FNP was founded by Sunnybrook psychiatrist Dr. Anthony Levitt and a group of parents who experienced challenges navigating the complex mental health care system to find help for their children.
  • FNP connects youth (ages 13 to 26) and families with clinically trained professionals who conduct assessments, analyze needs and provide navigation of the health-care and social service system.
  • A FNP survey confirms the urgent need for youth mental health navigation services. Nearly one-third of Ontario families are caring for at least one youth with mental illness and/or addiction.

Quotes

“Accessing the right mental health resources, at the right time, is life-changing for young people and their families seeking care,” said Dave McKay, President & CEO, RBC. “Team RBC is very proud to celebrate 10 years of partnership with Sunnybrook in support of the Family Navigation Project through our Toronto Race event. This program is fundamental to helping young people through difficult times so they can fulfill their potential.”

“I’m moved every year by seeing the thousands of people who join in to support youth mental health. The entire team at FNP and I are extremely grateful to RBC and all the Race participants for the generous and long-standing support. Without their help and commitment, we wouldn’t be able to help the thousands of young people we have helped over the years. Our goal is to continue to help the youth of Ontario find the best mental health and addictions care they can.” — Dr. Anthony Levitt, medical director of the Family Navigation Project and chief of the Hurvitz Brain Sciences Program at Sunnybrook.

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Canada Adopts Joint Statement On Cooperation On Global Supply Chains

Supply Chain

The following is the Joint Statement of the 2022 Supply Chain Ministerial Forum released by U.S. Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, and U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Gina Raimondo, on behalf of partner economies, including Canada. The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, signed the statement on behalf of the Government of Canada, at a virtual plenary session earlier today.

“The shocks to global supply chains from pandemics, wars and conflicts, extreme climate impacts, and natural disasters have put in stark relief the urgent need to further strengthen supply chains, to work to reduce and end near-term disruptions, and to build long-term resilience. This is a global challenge we intend to approach resolutely and cooperatively.   

“Australia, Brazil, Canada, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States (hereinafter the “Participants”), following engagement at the 2022 Supply Chain Ministerial Forum, intend to work together on crisis response in an effort to alleviate near-term transportation, logistics, and supply chain disruptions and bottlenecks as well as the long-term resilience challenges that make our supply chains vulnerable and cause spillover effects for consumers, large and small businesses, workers, and families. To ensure this effort is effective and reaches those most in need, we intend to engage on this work with businesses, workers, academia, labor and civil society, including women, representatives from local and other communities, consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations, and different levels of government.

“Building collective, long-term resilient supply chains based on international partnerships is critical to the success of this effort.  To achieve this, we aim to follow these global supply chain principles: 

Transparency:  We intend to promote transparency in consultation with the private sector, civil society, different levels of government, and other relevant stakeholders, consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations, in order to strengthen the resilience of supply chains. Civil society consultations, consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations, are an important part of transparency. We intend to advance information sharing, and to the extent possible common approaches and early warning systems, about potential, emerging, and systematic supply challenges. We intend to undertake this cooperation consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations and with utmost care to protect non-public information, including information necessary for the protection of essential security interests.

Diversification:  We aim to promote diversification and increase global capacities for multiple, reliable, and sustainable sources of materials and inputs, intermediate goods, and finished goods in priority sectors, along with logistics infrastructure capacities, increasing resilience of supply chains to make our economies less vulnerable to disruptions and shocks. We intend to explore opportunities to promote public and private investment into supply chains in priority sectors and to encourage partnerships and co-investment for access to and development of environmentally and socially responsibly sourced materials and inputs.

“We aim to promote the involvement of small and medium sized businesses in priority supply chains. We aim to promote the adoption of digital technologies by micro-, small, and medium sized companies. To advance the principles of equity and inclusion, we aim and strive to ensure investments are made into a broad range of communities, consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations, throughout our economies. 

Predictability is important to resilient supply chains, and we will aim to work together to promote predictability, openness, fairness, and nondiscrimination in our economic relations as they impact our supply chains. We will aim to reinforce and foster our longstanding, rules-based economic partnerships and supply chain relationships.

Security:  To promote supply chain security, we intend to deepen our consultations to identify and address risks arising from supply dependencies and potential vulnerabilities in critical infrastructure. We intend to work together to address our mutual vulnerabilities and work to eliminate corruption in support of supply chain security. We encourage Participants to undertake this cooperation in partnership with industry, labor and civil society, and other relevant stakeholders, pursuant to domestic laws, to better understand and manage security risks to supply chains. 

Sustainability:  We intend to encourage global sustainability and responsible business conduct across supply chains, as well as objectives set out in relevant multilateral environmental agreements to which we are parties, including the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Paris Agreement. We encourage the adoption of responsible business practices and recognize the importance of implementing our respective obligations under international labor conventions ratified by respective countries along the entire value chain to ensure that opening up new sourcing or supply chain options does not shortcut existing commitments to uphold human rights. This includes our intent to cooperate to eradicate the use of forced labor in global supply chains. We aim to foster the increased use of recycled materials and product components. We also aim to foster and support the fair and sustainable manufacturing and trade of products, consistent with Participants’ domestic laws and international obligations, including through circular economy, the bioeconomy, and other approaches, that advance the fight against climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution, and which advance the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

“We welcome all economies and invite all industries, businesses, women, workers, officials from different levels of government, labor and civil society, and other stakeholders to join us in pursuit of resilient supply chains, guided by these principles.  We acknowledge the key to resolving the next global supply chain crisis is to prevent it from happening in the first place.”

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Three-Quarters of Young Canadians More Likely to Leave Their Current Job For One With Better Benefits

Employee Benefits

In the midst of a tight labour market, Canadians are placing increasing importance on employer-provided benefits plans. According to a recent RBC Insurance survey, nearly three-quarters of young Canadians aged 18-34 (73 per cent) and 35-44 (69 per cent), are significantly more likely to leave their current employer for another that is offering what they would consider to be better benefits.

In determining what makes one benefits plan better than another, the top three desired features as reported by survey respondents were support for mental health (88 per cent), a health spending account (80 per cent) and options to add additional coverage (79 per cent) to better meet personal or financial objectives. These results are aligned with how younger workers are feeling, with 61 per cent reporting lower levels of overall well-being (down three points since 2021), and 58 per cent reporting a decline in mental health (down five points since 2021).

“Given our collective experience since March of 2020, it’s not surprising to see a range of worries and stressors reported by working Canadians” says Julie Gaudry, Head of Group Benefits, RBC Insurance. “The knock-on impacts of a tightening labour market have made flexible and tailored employer-provided benefits desired by many – and clearly a draw, particularly for younger generations.”

 

Market trends also signal the need for better employer benefits

Some other labour market trends are highlighting the need for competitive employer-provided benefits. According to RBC Economics, there are roughly 70 per cent more job postings and 6 per cent fewer available workers compared to pre-pandemic levels in Canada, creating a ‘buyer’s market’ for those seeking a job change. Further, The Bank of Canada’s Survey of Consumer Expectations revealed the likelihood of a worker voluntarily leaving a job is increasing, as younger Canadians reported lower levels of overall well-being, mental and physical health year-over-year since 2019.
 
“With heightened competition for talent, it’s critical that organizations develop or refine benefits plans as a key component of their offer,” says Gaudry. “We need to pay particular attention to this younger cohort, which already makes up a significant proportion of the workforce, and continues to grow. Employers must ensure the right support is available to this younger generation.”
 

Benefits plans make a difference

Canadians with employer-provided benefits are significantly more likely to rate their job satisfaction (64 per cent, six points higher), overall level of well-being (64 per cent, 10 points higher), physical health (62 per cent, eight points higher), mental health (60 per cent, seven points higher), and financial health (55 per cent, 17 points higher) higher than those without benefits.

 

Top three takeaways for employers

  1. Prioritize employee mental health and well-being. RBC Insurance Group Benefit Solutions offers a Workplace Wellness Toolkit which provides plan administrators with a framework for assessing the well-being needs of their employees and creating a wellness strategy that is tailored to the unique goals of their organization at no additional cost.

  2. Increase awareness of existing benefits plan features. Remind employees about the coverage they may already have available and how to access it. This is also a great opportunity to gather feedback about employee satisfaction of their benefits plan.

  3. Ensure your benefits plan meets the needs of your workforce. One way to do this is to offer flexible coverage and a health or wellness spending account which allows employees to customize their plans to meet their individual needs. This will help with retention and recruitment efforts; especially for younger Canadians.

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New Laws to Strengthen Canadians’ Privacy Protection and Trust In the Figital Economy

Privacy protection

Canadians to benefit from clear rules around the use of personal information and responsible AI development

Canadians increasingly rely on digital technology to connect with loved ones, to work and to innovate. That’s why the Government of Canada is committed to making sure Canadians can benefit from the latest technologies, knowing that their personal information is safe and secure and that companies are acting responsibly.

Today, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, together with the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, introduced the Digital Charter Implementation Act, 2022, which will significantly strengthen Canada’s private sector privacy law, create new rules for the responsible development and use of artificial intelligence (AI), and continue advancing the implementation of Canada’s Digital Charter. As such, the Digital Charter Implementation Act, 2022 will include three proposed acts: the Consumer Privacy Protection Act, the Personal Information and Data Protection Tribunal Act, and the Artificial Intelligence and Data Act.

The proposed Consumer Privacy Protection Act will address the needs of Canadians who rely on digital technology and respond to feedback received on previous proposed legislation. This law will ensure that the privacy of Canadians will be protected and that innovative businesses can benefit from clear rules as technology continues to evolve. This includes:

  • increasing control and transparency when Canadians’ personal information is handled by organizations;
  • giving Canadians the freedom to move their information from one organization to another in a secure manner;
  • ensuring that Canadians can request that their information be disposed of when it is no longer needed;
  • establishing stronger protections for minors, including by limiting organizations’ right to collect or use information on minors and holding organizations to a higher standard when handling minors’ information;
  • providing the Privacy Commissioner of Canada with broad order-making powers, including the ability to order a company to stop collecting data or using personal information; and
  • establishing significant fines for non-compliant organizations—with fines of up to 5% of global revenue or $25 million, whichever is greater, for the most serious offences.

The proposed Personal Information and Data Protection Tribunal Act will enable the creation of a new tribunal to facilitate the enforcement of the Consumer Privacy Protection Act. 

The proposed Artificial Intelligence and Data Act will introduce new rules to strengthen Canadians’ trust in the development and deployment of AI systems, including:

  • protecting Canadians by ensuring high-impact AI systems are developed and deployed in a way that identifies, assesses and mitigates the risks of harm and bias;
  • establishing an AI and Data Commissioner to support the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry in fulfilling ministerial responsibilities under the Act, including by monitoring company compliance, ordering third-party audits, and sharing information with other regulators and enforcers as appropriate; and
  • outlining clear criminal prohibitions and penalties regarding the use of data obtained unlawfully for AI development or where the reckless deployment of AI poses serious harm and where there is fraudulent intent to cause substantial economic loss through its deployment.

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Canadian Minister of Transport Visits Washington, D.C.

Bird's eye view of a dock with shoipping containers and cargo ships docked in the evening

Many global events such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, have disrupted supply chains across the world, having a real impact on the daily lives of Canadians. Canada is working closely with the United States to strengthen their common supply chains to make them stronger and greener.

On 24th May 2022, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, was in Washington, D.C. to discuss common transport priorities with U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.

  • Transport Canada and the U.S. Department of Transportation have identified joint projects to reduce pollution from all transportation modes, such as the development of binational alternative fuel corridors and the creation of a zero-emission vehicle task force.
  • They will also work on reducing pollution from the rail and aviation sectors, and identify green shipping corridors between our two countries.
  • They also took this opportunity to discuss the next steps related to the PS752 shoot-down, solutions on how to restore disrupted supply chains, and Russia’s unprovoked and unjustifiable invasion of Ukraine.

Minister Alghabra hosted a Supply Chain Roundtable with major transportation businesses and labour associations. The Co-Chairs of Canada’s Supply Chain Task Force, Jean Gattuso and Louise Yako, joined him to hear the participants’ perspectives on how to build more resilient supply chains between Canada and the U.S.

Finally, Minister Alghabra had fruitful meetings with White House Senior Advisor to the President for Infrastructure Coordination, Mitch Landrieu, and the Chief Executive Officer of Amtrak, Stephen Gardner.

The Honourable Omar Alghabra Minister of Transport had this to say:

“My day in Washington, D.C., has been tremendously productive. Not only have I met with one of my closest counterparts, Secretary Buttigieg, but also with other senior politicians and business leaders. These conversations are critical to Canada’s efforts in ensuring our transportation system remains safe, secure, efficient and environmentally responsible. 

I am committed to helping Canadians and Canadian businesses that are vulnerable to disruptions in global supply chains, as they rely on U.S. and other foreign suppliers for crucial inputs and on foreign markets for selling their products.”

After the day’s events and discussions, it seems a positive outcome was reached for both countries, and the supply chain issues will continue to be monitored and resolved.

 

Quick Facts

  • Canada and the United States enjoy a strong and unique relationship when it comes to trading and transportation.
  • A secure and efficient flow of goods and people across the border is vital to both countries’ economic competitiveness and prosperity.
  • One year ago, Transport Canada and the United States Department of Transportation reaffirmed the special nature of their relationship as well as their commitment to working closely together on sustainable transportation through the release of a Joint Statement on the Nexus between Transportation and Climate Change.
  • Bilateral trade between Canada and the United States in goods and services reached $1 trillion in 2021.
  • Canada buys more goods from the United States than China, France and Japan combined.
  • Canada is the top trading partner of most U.S. states.
  • Canadian companies operating in the United States directly employ 634,000 Americans.
  • Canada-U.S. trade is built upon long-standing bi-national supply chains. In 2021, approximately 79% of Canadian goods exports to the United States were incorporated into U.S. supply chains.

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Surging use of Digital Banking Accelerates During the Pandemic: CBA Survey

Mobile Banking

Banking preferences are evolving with technology, world events, and the generational influences of younger customers

The widespread migration to digital technologies driven by public health measures accelerated changes to the way Canadians bank, as more than three-quarters of customers (78 per cent) have come to rely on digital channels to conduct most of their banking. This is among the many findings in How Canadians Bank, a recent survey of 4,000 Canadians commissioned by the Canadian Bankers Association (CBA).

Survey highlights:

  • 78 per cent of Canadians are using digital channels to conduct most of their banking transactions, up from 76 per cent in 2018 and 68 per cent in 2016.
  • 89 per cent of Canadians reported using online banking in the last year.
  • 65 per cent of Canadians used mobile app-based banking in the last year, up considerably from 2018 and 2016 results, at 56 per cent and 44 per cent respectively.
  • Three out of four Canadians (75 per cent) intend to keep the digital banking habits developed during the pandemic.
  • 86 per cent of Canadians trust their bank to offer secure digital banking services.

“The pandemic proved to be a major catalyst for change as Canadians moved more of their daily activities online, including a large-scale uptake of digital banking and contactless transaction methods,” said Anthony G. Ostler, President and CEO, CBA. “Reliable digital banking solutions were already in place when it mattered most thanks to a long-standing commitment to strengthening the customer experience through technology. Further innovations were developed in record time to support consumers as their lives changed dramatically. These factors combined helped Canadians do more online than ever before while reducing risks and delivering convenience at a critical time.”

 

Digital by default: Technology and generational influences of younger customers

As technology evolves and changes the way we live and work, the digital expectations of consumers are rising. This is the leading catalyst for continued innovation as banks look for new, easier ways for Canadians to access their banking consistently and securely. And Canadians clearly value the convenience of these innovations and feel better served as a result.

  • 90 per cent of consumers believe that new technologies have made banking a lot more convenient.
  • 86 per cent of Canadians agree that their bank has improved service through technology. More than one-third (34 per cent) of Gen Z consumers “strongly agree” that technology is improving their banking experience.
  • 84 per cent of consumers are satisfied with Tap & Pay contactless payments, up significantly from 74 per cent in 2018.

The broad-based shift towards online and mobile banking has gathered momentum during the pandemic, and consumers under the age of 30 are the main drivers of this trend. Indeed, digital-first customer preferences are likely to become more entrenched in the years ahead.

Ostler adds: “The pace of change in any industry is usually dictated by the customer. And what bank customers want is a digital-first approach to their financial transactions, in real-time, from anywhere, on a reliable and secure network. Significant investments in modernization have helped banks in Canada anticipate and meet the evolving preferences of their customers.”

 

Online banking is still the most common way people bank

As banking technologies have come to the forefront, online banking has cemented its position as the most common form of banking for most Canadians.

  • Half of customers (49 per cent) say that online banking is now their most common banking method – 20 per cent higher than app-based banking, the second ranked method, although that gap is closing.
  • 46 per cent of Canadians increased their use of online banking in the last few years, particularly among consumers under the age of 30 (58 per cent).
  • A large majority (93 per cent) of Canadians are satisfied with online banking.

Though not surprising given recent events, the average Canadian visits their bank’s website five times as often as they do their branch. While online is the predominant banking method for most Canadians, that dominance is declining over time as an increasing number of customers gravitate to mobile app-based tools.

 

Mobile app-based banking continues to rise, led by Gen Z and Millennial uptake

Every Canadian with a smartphone now has a bank in their pocket. Because most Canadians carry these devices, banks offer mobile banking and payment services and apps that allow customers to perform a variety of transactions through their phones. As a result, the number of Canadians banking on the go continues to rise, particularly among younger customers.

  • 37 per cent of Canadians increased their use of mobile banking in the last few years, led by bank customers under the age of 30 (59 per cent).
  • Nearly half of Gen Z (46 per cent) and well over a third of Millennials (37 per cent) say apps are their leading banking method, as opposed to 29 per cent for all demographics groups combined.
  • Members of Gen Z are five times more reliant on mobile banking technology than older Canadians aged 65 and above.
  • 80 per cent of Canadians say they are satisfied with mobile banking services, up from 73 per cent in 2018.

 

High levels of trust in banking innovation

With many digital services available today, trust in the security of personal data and financial information has eroded in many sectors of the economy. However, the opposite seems to be true for the banking sector, where confidence is gaining.

  • 87 per cent of customers trust their bank to protect personal information.
  • Banks always put their customers at the centre of trusted innovation.

Canada’s banks have earned a strong reputation as pillars of stability, but they are also dynamic and continually anticipate and adapt to evolving customer preferences. Canadians place high trust in banks because they have delivered convenience through technology for decades – always with a focus on security and privacy.

 

Digital currencies: interest is growing, but consumers are wary

While the end of physical money is not near, a dizzying array of cryptocurrencies has launched in recent years. How are Canadians responding to these innovations?

  • Led by younger Canadians, more than half (56 per cent) of consumers would consider using a private cryptocurrency.
  • 64 per cent of Canadians say convenience is the main reason they use, or would use, a cryptocurrency.
  • One-third (36 per cent) of consumers expect to be using an alternative currency in five years.

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Best Engineering Procurement Construction Specialists – Canada

Cooling towers with the International Cooling Tower logo in the top left corner

As an outstanding cornerstone of the international construction community, International Cooling Tower Incorporated has made a name for itself with incredible cooling solutions that can be applied across a myriad of different industries. Able to handle the intensity of oil and gas cooling, as well as renewable energy plant cooling and more, its cooling towers promise to be delivered on time and on budget in order to allow clients to go about serving their own clients and end-customers with confidence, knowing that they have invested in the best solution on the market.

International Cooling Tower Inc. is the place for innovations in the engineering and production of exemplary industrial cooling projects. Fundamentally, their engineering, procurement, and construction services have been serving the industry for years, cementing their place at the top of the sector for high-budget and high-intensity industrial cooling since 1958. A North American market leader, standout company in the field of freshly created solutions, and producer of aftermarket towers of all shapes and sizes, they have committed themselves to being a one-stop-shop for industrial process, chemical, oil, gas, renewables, and power facility elements.

They have also achieved this in a worldwide sense. Since its inception, their exemplary work and work ethic has secured their notoriety in their market segments, increasing their good reputation amongst their peers and customers, both prospective and current, to form a large contact network. Additionally, with the materials, parts, and equipment at their disposal at any given time, their dedicated and diligent team and longstanding relationships with vendors allows them to be on time, every time. No matter how tight the deadlines are for a specific project or build, International Cooling Tower Inc. promises they will go above and beyond to help a client meet them; this, aided massively by their logistical partnerships and connections, has developed a penchant for reliability that has allowed them to enjoy continual growth.

Furthermore, their team are another outstanding element of their business operations – from their building experts to their administration team – each offering the height of integrity, equality, and respect when it comes to the customer service they provide. In this way, their staff are invigorated by challenge and undaunted by roadblocks. However, even with all this being said, roadblocks are very rarely an issue due to International Cooling Tower Inc.’s brilliant project management acumen, allowing it them track and schedule processes on time every time, as well as to deliver their projects within the budget that has been given to them by the client.

In addition, their quality management, construction procedures, and 3rd party certifications show how they ensure they perform their work correctly the first time, every time. This ability to take care of their clients and the projects brought to them have further secured the reputation that International Cooling Tower Inc. has been building since its inception, making for a company that clients are happy to come back to using time and time again. These clients also go on to leave them glowing reviews, recommending their services to industry peers through word-of-mouth referrals, is something they wish to thank each and every one of them for, as it continues to provide the best cooling tower services in 2022 and beyond.

 

For business inquiries, contact Jeff Colliou McKay at International Cooling Tower Inc. via www.ictower.com.

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Best Indigenous Owned Sustainable Energy Developer 2021

Wind terbines on a hil with a purple sunset behind. The Nunavut Nukkiksautiit Corporation (NNC) logo is in the top left corner

Nunavut Nukkiksautiit Corporation (NNC) is a 100% Inuit-owned renewable energy developer based in Iqaluit, Nunavut, Canada. As a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qikiqtaaluk Corporation, NNC strives to work with communities in the Qikiqtani region to identify clean energy solutions that foster economic, social, and environmental benefits for Nunavummiut. It partners with communities to develop and implement clean, reliable, and affordable renewable energy solutions in the Qikiqtani region.

Nunavut Nukkiksautiit Corporation prioritizes community support for projects and as such, strives to ensure transparency throughout the development, construction, and operational phases of each project. Its goal is to empower communities in the Qikiqtani region through the development and installation of sound clean energy infrastructure.

The renewable energy industry remains in its infancy in Nunavut. Remote communities in Canada continue to be heavily reliant on diesel fuel for electricity generation, which is neither economically nor environmentally sustainable. With this, NNC strives to develop projects which incorporate innovative technologies, proven in Arctic climates, for installation in communities in the Qikiqtani region. Safety and reliability are key factors to prioritize when installing electrical generation equipment in remote communities and thus, only proven clean technologies are incorporated into its projects. The company aligns with strategic partners who have technical expertise in renewable energy systems in remote communities to ensure all projects are soundly designed and developed.

Being Nunavut’s first 100% Inuit-owned renewable energy provider, it thus remains of paramount importance that it remains based in Nunavut. Located in the territorial capital allows it access to various territorial government departments, Inuit organizations, and non-profit organizations with whom it engages to advocate for fair energy policies in Nunavut. As the main travel hub in the territory, being located in Iqaluit also allows the company relatively easy access to traveling to communities in the Qukiqtani region.

Its base in Iqaluit along with connections with relevant stakeholders in the territory, NNC is able to stay informed on up-to-date developments in the regulatory space. Collaborating with other developers in the territory allows it to understand technological innovations and to share lessons learned in the development process in Nunavut. Partnerships and collaboration with communities allows the company to ensure its projects are developed to a high standard, ensuring incorporation of community priorities in development activities.

However, the major challenge regarding renewable energy development in Nunavut is the regulatory landscape. There is currently no policy in the territory to permit the sale of electricity from independent power producers at the community level. While residential and commercial customers in Nunavut are able to install renewable energy generating systems at their facilities, community-scale renewable energy generation is not yet permitted in the region, making any kind of significant reduction in diesel fuel use in the territory impossible. NNC continues to develop renewable energy solutions with communities in the Qikiqtani region and advocate for fair energy policies at the territorial level in an effort to enable the clean energy transition in Nunavut.

NNC is now looking towards the future, with two projects in advanced stages of development, both of which it hopes to move to construction phases this year, thereby realizing the associated economic, social, and environmental benefits to renewable energy in Nunavut. A clean energy microgrid project in Iqaluit as well as a wind and battery energy storage project in Sanikiluaq are among its top priorities to continue advancing in 2022.

 

For business inquiries, contact Heather Shilton at Nunavut Nukkiksautiit Corporation via [email protected] or www.nunavutcleanenergy.ca.

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Is It Crucial for Canadian Business People to Speak French?

Business Discussion

Unlike other countries in the western world that stick to English as their official language, Canada is diverse in the mother tongues of its residents. The official languages are English and French, but over 7 million people have a different first language.

Business people in the country can get by without any knowledge of French, unless they’re operating within Quebec. However, there are various reasons learning the language could be highly beneficial for anyone who wants to run a successful company in Canada.

Easy for Anyone to Get Highly Skilled at French

Although French is taught in most schools around the country, many Canadians leave school without a proficient level of the language. Luckily, nowadays it is possible to learn advanced French online. Aside from the basics, online learners can master the numerous adverbs that are key to becoming adept at French. Online learning is highly accessible, with plenty of learning methods available for learners of all levels.

For people short on time or unwilling to travel long distances to learn, there are plenty of tutors ready to teach you when it’s most convenient. With all these tools available, Canadians have no excuse but to ensure their French is at a suitable level.

 

If you Operate in Quebec you Need French

When answering the question whether knowledge of French is crucial in Canada, it depends on where you plan to do business. If your business is based in Quebec, it must have information in the official language of the province.

This is written in Article 5 of the Charter of the French Language, where it states that Quebec residents have a right to be served in French. This also covers online services that cater to people within the province.

It’s also crucial that you’re aware your business name needs to be in French if you are based in Quebec. It needs to be clear in the language what your product or service is.

 

French Can be Useful Everywhere in Canada

Even if your business is operating outside of Quebec, you should appreciate that 22.8 percent of the Canadian population speaks French. While many of these people are concentrated in the French-speaking province, they do travel around the rest of the country as well.

Also, deciding to not offer your product or service in Quebec will lead you to lose out on reaching over 8 million people. Therefore, it makes little sense to have an English language-only company in Canada.

If your business exists predominantly online, making information available in English and French could be helpful. Not only can you appeal to people in Quebec, but you can market your offerings to people in France and other French-speaking nations.

French is the fourth-most spoken language in the world, behind Spanish, Mandarin, and English. Being able to speak it could be useful in many ways, but it is particularly important for business people in Canada. In fact, many successful business people in Canada are fluent in at least English and French.

So, if you’re looking to open your business to the francophone market but your language skills aren’t up to scratch, it’s never too late to learn.

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Kyndryl Announces a New Cloud Innovation Centre in Montreal

Cloud Innovation

Centre will create nearly 500 new IT roles and extend Kyndryl’s industry-leading cloud services to more Canadian organizations

Kyndryl announced today the creation of a new bilingual technology services centre in Montréal, Québec that is expected to create nearly 500 new IT jobs in the next five years. This centre will enable Kyndryl to meet the growing demand for cloud skills and extend delivery of its industry-leading digital transformation services to Canadian organizations.

Kyndryl, the new independent infrastructure technology services company spun off from IBM, is the largest in Canada and the world. The company supports mission critical workloads and digital transformation for top Canadian organizations. The company designs, builds, manages, and modernizes the mission-critical technology systems that the world depends on every day including Canadian customers such as financial institutions, airlines, governments, industrial products, and more. 

The new Cloud Innovation Centre will provide Canadian customers with high value certified skills in areas including cloud application modernization, automation for DevOps and service management, analytics and artificial intelligence, and digitization services. By expanding access to this advanced expertise, Kyndryl will help its existing and new customers tackle their most pressing business objectives in modern, digital ways.

Cloud, one of Kyndryl’s key practice areas, is being used to accelerate digitization for organizations across every industry. Through partnerships with hyperscalers such as Microsoft and Google Cloud – and leading solutions providers SAP and VMware – Kyndryl is delivering enterprises the freedom of choice to deploy the best technologies that fit their operations. Additionally, cloud is the enabler of the other practice areas Kyndryl delivers including: Applications, Data & Artificial Intelligence, Digital Workplace, Security & Resiliency, Network & Edge, and Core Enterprise & zCloud.

The centre has already created more than 100 new IT roles who have a desire to build innovative skills for the future. New employees are receiving training across the tech industry’s leading cloud platforms, automation tools, cybersecurity, and from Kyndryl’s vast partner network.

“This centre creates tremendous opportunity in several ways. Our customers and organizations across Canada can now leverage Kyndryl’s world class talent, with the top skills in cloud and technology services, to help them accelerate their digital transformation strategies and achieve their business goals,” says Xerxes Cooper, President of Kyndryl Canada.  “The next-generation workforce from local technical colleges and universities have the opportunity to deliver the technology skills needed to drive business innovation, and this centre positions Quebec as a hub for global businesses.”

The COVID-19 pandemic forced organizations to accelerate their digital transformation strategies. Today, the pressure to remain relevant in a fiercely competitive market means that transformation must continue. The demand for skills and expertise has never been higher, making the creation of Kyndryl’s Cloud Innovation Centre important and timely for Canadian companies.

Canada is home to a diverse, highly-skilled, and well-educated workforce and a thriving innovation ecosystem. Investments like Kyndryl’s will play an important role in supporting Canada’s strong, sustainable, inclusive economic recovery. Our government will continue to promote Canada as a leading investment destination and create good-paying middle class jobs around the country.”

Mary Ng, Minister of International Trade, Export Promotion, Small Business and Economic Development:

“The Ville de Montréal is delighted that Kyndryl has chosen Montréal for its new services centre. Coming out of the pandemic, companies must transform their business models and adopt new technologies. Kyndryl’s growth in Montréal demonstrates the impact of the efforts made by the city and its partners over the past few years. The company will be able to count on the talent from our universities and the support of our teams throughout all stages of the business development.”

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