`Green` companies make-up one-third of British Columbia`s top 20 innovators in 2012

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Source: GLOBE Foundation

Last week, BC Business Magazine released its annual list of British Columbia's Top 20 most innovative companies for 2012. Seven out of the twenty companies, or one-third, are active players in the province's growing 'green' economy. This is an increase from the magazine's 2011 rankings, which highlighted only three such companies.

Making the Top 20 list is no easy feat. According to BC Business Magazine's methodology, the nominees were sourced from a province-wide, comprehensive survey that was then assessed by a volunteer panel of innovation experts. From that selection, the magazine's editorial staff made the final cut based on a stringent set of criteria.

It has been said that innovation will be one of the most important drivers of a greener economy and successful companies are often those that are addressing human needs such as improved health and environmental quality. With increasing consumer awareness and demand for more environmentally-friendly products and services, this year's winners showcase how green businesses are often more resilient to market fluctuations and have shown strong growth despite economic hardships.

This reality was also highlighted in a report released by GLOBE Advisors in March 2012 entitled The West Coast Clean Economy: Opportunities for Investment & Accelerated Job Creation, which illustrates that progressive public policy frameworks in British Columbia and the West Coast states of California, Oregon, and Washington, have been driving clean technology innovation and investment in the region's green economy over the last decade.

Edging out a competitive pool of over 56 other nominees, BC's seven 'green' innovators for 2012 exemplify an entrepreneurial business mantra that has allowed them to overcome many of the practical business challenges that have plagued others. Not only are they innovators, but they are also leaders in their fields for driving the greater economy towards a greener future. The sectors represented by the winning companies include clean energy, energy efficiency, green building, and environmental protection.

The seven green companies profiled by BC Business this year are:

Saltworks Technologies Inc. A company with a revolutionary patented desalination and brine treatment process that desalinates seawater or brackish water to produce freshwater. The applications for their technologies are significant; especially in areas of the world where freshwater is a scarce resource.

Awesense Wireless Inc.  Provider of products and solutions that help utilities reduce inefficiencies and losses in the electrical grid. Their solutions aim to reduce costs for the utility and the end-consumer, as well as optimizing the usage of energy resources.

Cascadia Windows Ltd. A manufacturer of fiberglass frames for their window and door products, they have also developed the 'Cascadia Clipper' - a fiberglass thermal space heater. Their products allow consumers to not only earn credits towards a LEED designation, but also save on energy costs.

Endurance Wind Power Inc.  An advanced wind turbine manufacturer with a specialized design for distributed wind power applications. Its products can already be found across North America and the United Kingdom with a momentum to expand into other global markets.

Debrand Services Inc. With many of their clients vouching that their services are 'the only acceptable way to do business,' Debrand provides solutions to divert a selection of waste material away from landfills. The diverted material is then processed and made reusable in a wide variety of applications.

Canada Metal (Pacific) Ltd.  The company has developed an aluminum alloy anode that sets a new industry standard for protecting watercraft and docks from underwater corrosion. Traditional sacrificial anodes made of zinc release minute amounts of cadmium, a carcinogenic compound, into the surrounding water and with millions of boats docked in marinas around the world, those minute amounts quickly compound.

EnWave Corp.The Company's breakthrough innovation is a radiant energy vacuum (REV) dehydration technology, which will be a game-changer for pharmaceutical and food applications. For the past 50 years, freeze-drying has been the standard technology for large-scale dehydration, but REV technology promises a faster, greener and more economical alternative through significant energy efficiency.

The West Coast Clean Economy Report is a forward-looking assessment of what is and what could be as the West Coast region progresses toward a cleaner, lower-carbon economic future. The report provides practical guidance on how to capitalize on the West Coast region's single most powerful competitive advantage - a cleaner and more sustainable economy.

For more information on the West Coast Clean Economy Report, click here.

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