Scaling up 2020: Bioeconomy Development Zones

News and Resources for BDO Zones, News for the BSCR Standards

Ecostrat is proud to be the Platinum Sponsor for Scaling Up 2020: Canada’s 5th annual industrial bioeconomy business conference.

Below, Jordan Solomon chairs a panel discussion on “Bioeconomy Development Zones: Driving Bio-Based Investment in Canada.” This panel included insights from former Cabinet Minister Ralph Goodale, Ron McCullough from the City of Melville, Martin Pudlas from Red Leaf Pulp, and John May from HamiltonClark.


Jordan Solomon (CEO, Ecostrat)
  • “Canadian biomass is an economic development engine: 132,000 jobs and nearly $31 billion of economic benefit. The Bioeconomy Development Zone Initiative can help Canada realize this potential… The BD Zone program is a powerful way of bringing more clean, green bio-based projects to Canada.”
  • “The City of Melville was recently accredited as Canada’s first BD Zone.”  
  • “Red Leaf Pulp is looking at Melville to locate its first-of-kind $300M wheat straw-to-pulp plant: the BD Zone designation makes it more likely that the Red Leaf Pulp will choose Melville”.
  • “There are hundreds more potential BD Zones in Canada… rolling out the BD Zone program to accredit them will unlock tremendous bio-based investment for Canada.”

Ralph Goodale (Canada’s UK High Commissioner; former Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Foods, Minister of Natural Resources, Minister of Finance, Minister of Public Works).

  • “Serious investors need to be ready to roll. That’s where the idea of the Bioeconomy Development Zones can be really helpful, to have that independent, third-party, standards-based legitimacy attached to, for example, the City of Melville, who now have a step up on all of its competitors around the province.”
  • “Bioeconomy pilot projects can pay farmers for their waste, get rid of some of the toughest crop residues, and offset job losses in the coal sector.”
  • “The bioeconomy is not a threat, it’s not something to be feared or hated, it’s an opportunity to get ahead of the future energy curve worldwide. To create jobs and make a profit, more profit than before.”

Ron McCullough (City Manager, The City of Melville)

  • “The City of Melville approached the BD Zone initiative because we are interested in attracting clean technology opportunities to Melville–opportunities like Red Leaf Pulp”.
  • “Agricultural biomass projects are an excellent addition to the economy and culture of our community”.

Martin Pudlas (CEO, Red Leaf Pulp)

  • “BD Zones [help] create a circular economy, promote domestic manufacturing and expand Canada’s expertise in the green economy. The BD Zone designation helped us better understand the low risk profile of wheat straw in Melville. “
  • “The first $300M Red Leaf Pulp plant will create 285 direct and indirect jobs in Saskatchewan.  Saskatchewan alone can accommodate 4-5 additional Red Leaf Pulp facilities.”
  • “Canada has a tremendous opportunity to create value from cereal grain straw… Three prairie provinces alone could generate $4.3 billion in value.”

John May (Managing Director Renewable Energy Investment, Hamilton Clark; formerly  Co-Head of Stern Brothers & Co Investment Bank’s Renewable Energy Practice)

  • “The Biomass Supply Chain Risk Standards are one of the great analytical frameworks that the biosector has seen. Before these criteria, there were no rating agency guidelines for how to measure the credibility of feedstock, so investors were left to guess. Now, there’s a quantitative model with qualitative aspects that has transformed bio, and the bioeconomy forever.”
  • “A BD Zone Designation makes it easier for sustainability-minded investors to feel less at risk regarding the money they are putting in, because it quantifies and qualifies the risk in a way that has never been done before. It’s a degree of certainty that was taken for granted in solar and wind and is now available in the biosector.”


To learn more about the speakers, or to view the entire Scaling Up program, please visit

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