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B.C., feds fund First Nations clean energy projects

B.C., feds fund First Nations clean energy projects

VANCOUVER – The federal and British Columbia governments are putting $9.8 million towards clean-energy projects for 35 First Nations throughout B.C.

The projects are receiving funding through the BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI), a partnership between the Government of Canada, the Province of British Columbia and New Relationship Trust (NRT), a release said.

This round of BCICEI support includes $7.5 million from PacifiCan and Indigenous Services Canada and $2.3 million from the Government of B.C through its CleanBC plan.

“First Nations are key partners as we work together to build cleaner, more resilient communities and power B.C.’s growing economy with renewable electricity. From rooftop solar to residential heat pumps and large-scale wind generation, the projects receiving funding today will advance Indigenous clean energy and create new opportunities across the province,” said B.C. Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation Josie Osborne in the release.

To further support First Nations clean-energy projects, the province, NRT and PacifiCan are about to start work on design of a new funding stream for BCICEI with input from First Nations, the release added.

The new stream will allow small-scale renewable-energy projects that are ineligible to submit to BC Hydro’s calls for power due to their size, to move forward and contribute to the power grid. The new stream will be funded with $140 million that was first announced in June 2023.

Details of the funding will soon be available at the NRT website, the release said.

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