Communities, businesses and residents in Sault Ste. Marie region will benefit from new opportunities as a result of a Government of Canada investment of more than $1.36 million.

FedNor media says the funding will assists Heliene Incorporated, a solar panel manufacturer in Sault Ste. Marie, with two clean technology projects.

"We would like to thank the Government of Canada, through FedNor, for its continued support of our efforts to drive business growth through innovation. We take pride in being at the leading edge of clean technology, and helping position our community for growth and success," said Martin Pochtaruk, President, Heliene Inc.

They say one portion of the funding will go to help develop and pilot renewable electric vehicle charging stations with energy storage capacity, of which will work independently from the existing electrical power grid.

The second contribution of funding will be used to help develop a photovoltaic smart grid solution for home and commercial use, according to FedNor Media.

The hardware and software development project will create intelligent modules that can increase the efficiency of power generation, enable remote monitoring, and react quickly to an increase in demand.

“Our government is committed to helping innovative businesses develop clean-tech solutions—a key component of Canada’s approach to promoting sustainable economic growth—that will address our future energy needs. Today’s announcement will enable Heliene Inc. to diversify its operations beyond its existing manufacturing and service streams, increasing its competitiveness on the global stage," said Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and Minister responsible for FedNor.

“I’m proud to be part of a government that recognizes that technology and innovation will shape the economy of the future. Today’s investment aligns with the Government of Canada’s Prosperity and Growth Plan for Northern Ontario and assists Heliene Inc. to be a key player in developing, commercializing, and manufacturing new solar products to meet the growing demand for clean energy solutions," said Terry Sheehan, Member of Parliament for Sault Ste. Marie

Since 2016, the Government of Canada has earmarked an additional $62 million for FedNor in support of various initiatives.

The organization aims to further strengthen Northern Ontario’s economy and create even more middle-class jobs for Canadians.