Feds announce $20M to reduce diesel reliance in remote Indigenous communities

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Today Amarjeet Sohi, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources announced a $20-million initiative to help reduce diesel reliance in remote Indigenous communities.

The Generating New Opportunities: Indigenous Off-diesel Initiative aims to help the communities move away from diesel by developing cleaner community-led energy projects.

Feb. 15, 2013 photo courtesy of the Northwest Territories Power Corporation.
The expanded solar panel system at the Fort Simpson airport. The largest solar project in the territory.

The initiative was developed in collaboration with Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise (ICE SE) and the Pembina Institute, a non-profit think-tank focused on clean energy.

An all-Indigenous panel will select up to 15 communities to receive support and up to $1.3 million in funding over the next three years to develop a community-driven energy plan.

After the three years are up, leading communities will receive another two years of funding from Natural Resources Canada’s Clean Energy for Rural and Remote Communities (CERRC) program. A total of $9 million is available to support plan implementation over the two years.

To qualify for funding the community must have a mostly Indigenous population, must not be connected to the North American electrical grid or the natural gas pipeline network and must be a permanent settlement of at least five years with ten dwellings or more.

According to the GNWT, 22 per cent of the territory’s communities used diesel to generate electricity in 2013.

 

For more information on the program and application requirements, click here.

The deadline to apply is March 15, 2019.

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