The T’Sou-ke Nation has once again been pulling off quiet accomplishments.
John Horgan tweeted the following today:
A bit of history: Here is a press release from 2009
July 17, 2009
Ministry of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development
FIRST NATION CAPS CLEAN ENERGY SUCCESS
SOOKE – T’Sou-ke Nation is winding up a successful Innovative Clean Energy Fund project by hosting about 50 First Nations from across B.C. for two days of information-sharing and celebration, Iain Black, Small Business, Technology and Economic Development Minister, said today.
“With support from the provincial government, T’Sou-ke Nation has put together the largest grid-connected photovoltaic solar energy system operating in British Columbia today,” Black said. “True to their cultural tradition of sharing knowledge, T’Sou-ke Nation is adding value to this ICE Fund investment by inviting other Aboriginal communities in British Columbia to benefit from this experience.”
Almost exactly one year ago, T’Sou-ke Nation received $400,000 from the ICE Fund to build a 75-kilowatt solar photovoltaic installation, with a total project value of $1.25 million, on its traditional territory. The project is now complete, with operating solar power units on the band office, fisheries building and canoe shed. Day4 Energy of Burnaby, one of Canada’s leading solar technology companies, supplied the solar panels.
“First Nations have lived on this continent for thousands of years without using fossil fuels,” said T’Sou-ke Nation Chief Gordon Planes. “Thanks to the enthusiasm and support of the whole community, we have used our ICE Fund project to demonstrate that First Nations can lead the way towards a renewable energy future.”
“This kind of open communication and knowledge-sharing supports the principles of the New Relationship,” said Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister George Abbott. “By becoming a solar community, T’Sou-ke Nation has a new vision for their future and a new role as clean energy leaders.”
As well as the photovoltaic installation supported by the ICE Fund, T’Sou-ke Nation has fitted solar panels on 25 homes on the reserve and trained nine band members as solar panel installers. Over the last year, T’Sou-ke Nation has reduced energy consumption by 30 per cent.
T’Sou-ke Solar Gathering – A Solar Forum and Celebration, being held today and Saturday, is featuring speakers, workshops, renewable energy products and tours of solar installations in the community. Representatives of non-First Nation municipalities and off-grid communities are also attending the gathering.
The provincial government established the ICE Fund to foster solutions to B.C.’s energy challenges and help make the province’s clean energy technologies market-ready. Since 2008, the ICE Fund has approved investments of about $47 million in 34 projects in communities across B.C., representing a total value of over $174 million. These projects will help develop clean, renewable energy for British Columbians through various technological applications, including solar, wind, tidal, geothermal, ocean wave and bioenergy.
Read the original press release here