Alberta program funds solar panels for Little Red River Cree Nation

Elder William Seeseequon, Little Red River Cree Chief Conroy Sewepagaham, Minister Richard Feehan and MLA Debbie Jabbour in front of the Little Red River Cree Nation’s John D’Or Administration Building with new solar panels. Image: Government of Alberta

A First Nations community east of High Level, Alta. has installed new solar panels as part of Alberta’s Indigenous Solar Program.

With a $162,168 grant, Little Red River Cree Nation has installed solar panels on their band office and Kayas College.

The investment is expected to reduce utility costs by approximately $7,000 per year, as well as prevent about 880 tonnes of GHGs per year from entering the atmosphere.

The money we save on energy costs will also allow us to pursue other community initiatives,” Chief Conroy Sewepagaham said in a statement.

“In addition, renewable energies, such as solar, are Treaty-friendly to our peoples for as long as the sun shines, the grass grows and the waters flow.”

The grant is part of $35 million in funding available in 2017-18 for Indigenous climate leadership programs that help Indigenous communities respond to climate change and provide greater energy security, the province says.