The federal government is aiming to plant two billion trees across Canada in the next 10 years — and it is turning to drones to help do it. Ottawa has tapped Flash Forest, a reforestation company that uses aerial mapping software and drones that embed seed pods. The Toronto-based company secured $1.3 million from the government to plant at least one million trees over the next two years. Prior to this, Flash Forest was shut off from government initiatives, due to restrictive wording in procurement agreements that stipulates only planting seedlings counted toward the goal, and seed pods did not. “A lot of government contracts are not written in a way that allows for consideration of new innovation,” says Tyler Hamilton, MaRS’ cleantech lead… “They are based on past examples, and it really limits their thinking.” By educating governments and other commissioning bodies on technology we can overcome these hurdles, says Hamilton.