OTTAWA, ON, Nov. 1, 2023 /CNW/ – As the impacts of climate change are being felt across Canada, Indigenous and remote communities are leading the way in the deployment of clean, renewable and reliable energy sources. These are integral in the fight against climate change and to create a more secure, resilient future.
Today, the Government of Canada is pleased to announce that 10 remote Indigenous communities and First Nations have completed Phase 1 of the Indigenous Off-Diesel Initiative (IODI) Cohort 2:
- Xeni Gwet’in First Nations Government, British Columbia
- Tahltan Band, British Columbia
- Uchucklesaht, British Columbia
- Ḵwiḵwa̱sut’inux̱w Ha̱xwa’mis First Nation, British Columbia
- Hamlet of Paulatuk, Northwest Territories
- Fort Chipewyan, Alberta
- Mountain Cree Camp, Alberta
- Pangnirtung, Nunavut
- Kiashke Zaaging Anishinaabek – Gull Bay First Nation, Ontario
- Kangirsuk, Nunavik, Quebec
Each of the 10 communities and First Nations has successfully assembled a team of clean energy leaders in each community and completed the 20/20 Catalysts program delivered by the Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise.
Through Phase 2 of IODI coming later this fall, these 10 communities will be eligible to receive funding for projects that include training, community energy planning and community engagement.
The Indigenous Off-Diesel Initiative is part of the $300 million announced in Canada’s Strengthened Climate Plan to support clean energy projects in Indigenous, rural and remote communities. This is done through Wah-ila-toos, a single window access point for Indigenous, rural and remote communities to obtain Government of Canada funding and resources for clean energy initiatives.
Wah-ila-toos is administered by Natural Resources Canada, Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, Indigenous Services Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada, and Infrastructure Canada. The name Wah-ila-toos was gifted by three Grandmothers and Elders. It represents kinship with all and our duty to be in good relations with all.
The Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise is co-delivering Indigenous Off-Diesel Initiative in these 10 communities with Wah-ila-toos.
In the spirit of Wah-ila-toos, the Government of Canada will continue to work in partnership with Indigenous communities to advance reconciliation and self-determination, while building a low-emissions energy future and creating jobs.
“Indigenous Peoples are at the frontlines in the fight against climate change. That is why Canada is partnering with communities from coast to coast to coast to advance clean energy projects and get communities off diesel. This initiative will help ensure new economic opportunities as well as clean, reliable and affordable electricity is readily available for all those involved. There is more to do, and I look forward to continued progress toward a more sustainable and prosperous Canada.”
Minister of Energy and Natural Resources
“First Nations, Inuit and northern communities are leading the way with projects that will move them off diesel and ensure clean, reliable electricity for their members. This federal government will be at their side as they do so and create good-paying jobs while fighting climate change. Ensuring clean, reliable electricity will help create new economic opportunities and growth for Indigenous communities across Canada.”
Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister Responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency of Northern Ontario
“These Indigenous-led clean energy projects are a win-win for the environment and for the good jobs they will create. From coast to coast to coast, we’re seeing Indigenous Peoples driving ambitious climate action. Though they aren’t responsible for the climate crisis, climate change is a problem they disproportionately feel the impacts of, and they are showing up with solutions. Seeing these projects enter the next phase is great news.”
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations
IODI is a clean energy training and funding program that supports Indigenous-led climate solutions in remote Indigenous communities that currently use diesel or fossil fuels for heat and power.
IODI was first launched in 2019 and was designed based on 18 months of engagement with Indigenous communities, rights holders and organizations. It is delivered in collaboration with the Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise (ICE SE) and the Government of Canada.
Applicants who were not selected to participate in cohort 2 of IODI were invited to meet directly with a member of the Wah-ila-toos federal team and the team at the Indigenous Clean Energy Social Enterprise to discuss their priorities and other possible funding options. They were also invited to join the ICE Network, an online collaborative space for everyone working on Indigenous Clean Energy projects and attend future ICE Network events.
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SOURCE Natural Resources Canada