When Rio Tinto invests funds or expertise through its Regional Economic Development (RED) team, the goal is to support innovative economic diversification organisations with a view to helping them become self-sufficient in the future. The Centre d’excellence en efficacité énergétique (C3E) in Shawinigan is a perfect example of how this works.
The C3E was created in 2008, following the restructuring of our activities at the Shawinigan plant, and specialises in supporting businesses working in the field of efficient transportation electrification. To diversify the Mauricie economy, Rio Tinto wanted to create, with the help of its partners at the time, a sort of Energy Valley in Shawinigan. Over time, the project evolved into the C3E, which has supported nearly 40 businesses since 2008. Today, the C3E is diversifying and helping develop businesses such as Theron, the first manufacturer of high-performance electric all-terrain vehicles. Joseph Langlais, Project Director of RED, said, “The C3E also helps with the creation of businesses that can become Rio Tinto partners or suppliers. The projects developed also provide potential energy efficiency solutions, which can have a positive impact on the performance of businesses.”
Rio Tinto’s RED team will continue to support the C3E by maintaining a prominent position as an observer on its various functional and investment committees. Our presence at the C3E will give us a chance to collaborate as funding sources for innovative projects with high potential for economic benefits, based on our four areas of focus. “Projects such as AddEnergie are the result of support from RED and the C3E, and we are so proud of such businesses, which are participating in the electric transportation revolution,” Mr. Langlais added. “It is important for us to help support these fledgling businesses in turning their ideas into reality and tapping into their innovative potential on proven foundations.”
The C3E is an important ally, and Mr. Langlais’ presence as an observer will help us remain on the lookout for new businesses whose projects are in line with a responsible energy future and could contribute to reaching ambitious emission reduction goals for businesses in Quebec and elsewhere.