Starting an Eco-Friendly Business in Canada

Canada is one of the leading industrialized nations with strong policies aimed at protecting the environment and fighting climate change. Businesses in Canada are also required by law to adhere to certain “green” policies. Not only that, but Canadian consumers are also highly environmentally conscious. Therefore, if you are starting a business in Canada, it’s in the best interest of business and the public to make it eco-friendly.

If you are thinking about starting an eco-friendly business in Canada, here are several tips:

Learn the Local Laws

First of all, you need to know the national laws as well as the local laws in your business area that relate to eco-friendly businesses. Canada implements a strong verification program for all environmentally-friendly claims. So, if you promote your company as eco-friendly, it really should be. You might be required to meet certain standards to label your business as “eco-friendly” legally. If you don’t, you could face legal penalties or lose your business license, not to mention your company’s reputation.

Consult with Environmental Experts

Before you start, it will help to consult with several environmental experts. They will be able to tell you how you can realistically adopt eco-friendly principles. Environmental experts can also help you comply with regulatory requirements.

More importantly, an expert will be able to tell you if your eco-friendly idea is a good one. It’s worthwhile to consider if the industry you are in requires businesses to be eco friendly. For example, if you are selling a digital product, like downloadable software, does it make sense to label your business as “eco-friendly”? On the other hand, if this business has plans in the immediate future to switch completely to clean energy, like wind-powered server farms, then a label like that would make sense.

So, before you label your company green, ask the experts if you should, and if you do, how to comply, click here to learn more.

Develop a Realistic Framework for Adopting Green Tech Solutions

Once you have decided for sure to become an eco-friendly company, it’s time to actually adopt green tech solutions. While noble in principle, this tech is quite expensive. You need to have the means to finance your eco-friendly label. Here are several suggestions:

Borrow Money

In addition to taking out loans for your business, you might want to consider borrowing money to purchase green tech solutions. You can ask friends, family, banks or other lending institutions. Even if you have bad credit, people will be more likely to lend you money for eco-friendly ventures. If you already have debts, debt consolidation will help your application, click here.

Contact the Government Department Relevant to Your Industry

The Canadian government has a limited number of initiatives to financially assist companies that want to be more environmentally friendly. For example, freight transportation companies can request funding for adopting less harmful practices. Check and see if similar incentives are available for your industry.

Partner with Green Tech Companies

Your business will be able to contain costs and purchase tech for bargain rates if you partner with green tech companies. Such a partnership will be mutually beneficial.

Get Certified or Licensed

Your business’s claims of eco friendliness will be received with more trust if you get licenses or certifications to prove it. For example, if your products are more energy efficient, you can apply for an energy star rating. Don’t say something is more eco-friendly unless you can back up your claims.

Keep Up with Green Trends

Last but not least, don’t forget to keep up with the latest developments in the clean energy and pro-environment field. Your business will be able to adopt changes in a timely manner.

Being an eco-friendly business is not easy. Therefore, carefully consider the above points as a rough guideline.

Canadian Green Policies and Initiatives

Canada is North America’s most committed country to fighting climate change and preserving the environment. Canada has long been an energetic partner of the global environmental protection movement. Aside from vocal support for green policies worldwide, the country has particularly been keen on pragmatically implementing green policies domestically. As a result, Canada stands as one of the most environmentally conscious countries in the contemporary world.

Canada has a vast array of green policies being implemented on federal, provincial and local levels. The environmental law is extensive and complex, having adopted international statues on the issue as well as developing pro-environment laws domestically.

Here are some of the most notable green policies and initiatives of Canada:

ecoENERGY Technology Initiative

The ecoENERGY Technology Initiative (EcoETI) is a major initiative undertaken by the Canadian government to research and develop clean energy technology. Canada invests approximately $230 million per year on EcoETI. The aim of the research program is to develop tech that would reduce the environmental impact of fossil fuel, oil sands and hydrogen use in industries. The initiative hopes to develop bio-energy solutions for common pollution-causing fuel consumption needs. EcoETI also helps communities and cities adopt or integrate clean energy alternatives.

Community Energy Systems Program

Natural Resources Canada implements the Community Energy Systems Program (CES) where the agency collects data and advises local communities how to better adopt energy-efficient systems. Currently, this program is designed to identify potential ways local communities adopt energy saving methods like combining heat and power generation, storing heat and powering up using renewable energy sources found locally. The agency also develops opportunities for local communities to become more environmentally-friendly energy consumption wise. The program is also involved in testing and developing clean energy solution for districts.

Environmental Technology Verification (ETV) Programme

ETV verifies all environmental tech available for purchase in Canada. The aim of the program is to verify and license environmental claims associated with products like hybrid cars and consumer electronics with “green” labels. The verification system also applies to certain environmental programs and projects as well. ETV ensures that all environmentally friendly claims on products sold in Canada, projects and buildings are supported by empirical evidence. ETV is also considered a “support tool” for the Canadian government to make decisions regarding green policies, as the program collects data on reliability of available green technologies.

The Energy Efficiency Act (EEA)

EEA is a policy framework adopted in 1995 and implemented in 2010 to ensure energy efficiency standards for a variety of products available to Canadian consumers. The Act defines minimum performance standards for energy efficiency tests and claims. The EEA can also make current standards more stringent if necessary. The EEA was recently broadened to regulate 80 percent of all energy consumed in Canadian homes and by businesses in the country. EEA has future plans to introduce new standards for 20 unregulated products and to tighten existing requirements for 10 products.


ecoFREIGHT is a program under Transport Canada that aims to reduce the harmful environmental and health effects freight transportation can cause. The program aims to find solutions to common freight transportation related problems through developing and adopting new technology. The program has two ways to achieve its goals. The first is the Freight Technology Demonstration Fund, which provides freight transportation companies with financial assistance and cost sharing opportunities to test realistic solutions to alleviate environmental harm. The second is the Freight Technology Incentive Program, which provides funds for freight transportation companies and nonprofits to acquire emission-reducing technology.

The above are only a few of the green policies and initiatives available in Canada. Though the country has come far in terms of its peers like the United States in adopting green tech, it still has a long way to go before becoming ideally environmentally friendly.