(Photo submitted)

Montana First Nation builds the largest on-reserve solar farm in Canada

By Chevi Rabbit

By Chevi Rabbit

For Ponoka News

Montana First Nation, part of the Four Bands of Maskwacis Cree, created the largest on-reserve solar farm in Canada. A celebration was held on Sept. 14, 2020. However, the official operational launch date is expected this month.

This project has been a long-term project started in 2014 with completion in 2020.

Newly-elected Montana First Nation coun. Chase Rabbit is happy that his nation is providing environmentally-friendly energy.

“It opens the door for other business ventures and is an investment back into Montana First Nation,” he said.

The $12 million solar farm was financed with an $8 million grant from Alberta’s Indigenous Green Energy Development Program, with the Government of Alberta. The grant assists Alberta Indigenous communities and organizations to acquire an ownership stake in Alberta’s rapidly-expanding renewable energy sector.

The federal government provided $1 million, with Montana providing $3 million. Utimately, the project is expected to bring in an annual revenue of $800,000.

Construction of the solar farm partnered with GP Joule as the prime contractor and Montana First Nation-owned and operated entities Akamihk Kanataskiy Ventures (AKV) and Green Arrow Akamihk. Green Arrow Akamihk has previous experience in residential and commercial solar installations and part of this utility-scale build.

In an official statement David Pichard, CEO of GP Joule says that the solar installation is unique because it is a large utility-scale project built on-reserve of First Nation land and providing long-term funding to Montana First Nation through the sale of its electricity to the Alberta grid.

The project is expected to feed approximately 7,677 megawatt-hours of clean energy into the regional grid every year for the next 25 years: an amount equivalent to powering just over 1,060 homes annually.

MaskwacisSolar-Powered community

Just Posted

The City of Red Deer sits at 249 active cases of the virus, after hitting a peak of 565 active cases on Feb. 22. (Black Press file image)
Red Deer down to 119 active COVID-19 cases

Province identifies 179 new cases Saturday

Member Terry Parsons’ custom built track vehicle.
Forestburg’s Area 53 Racetrack gears up for action-packed season

Site will also host a portion of the ‘Miles of Mayhem’ event in July

Sabrina Wilde in front of a recently purchased monster truck. Submitted.
Thorsby business women a finalist for 2021 Alberta Women’s Entrepreneurship Award

Sabrina Wilde with Lone Wolf Mechanical is a finalist for the entrepreneurial award.

Grade 12 students at Wetaskiwin Composite High School took place in the annual water fight off school property on June 11, 2021. Shaela Dansereau/ Pipestone Flyer.
Graduating students in Wetaskiwin throw water fight after being told it could result in suspension

Students were told their participation could result in them being barred from graduation ceremonies.

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing during the Euro 2020 soccer championship group B match between Denmark and Finland at Parken stadium in Copenhagen, Saturday, June 12, 2021. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner, Pool)
Christian Eriksen in stable condition, Euro 2020 match resumes

Eriksen was given chest compressions after collapsing on the field during a European Championship

As stories of the horrors of residential schools circulate after the Tk’emlups te Secwepemc First Nation announced it had located what are believed to be the remains of 215 children, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs said he feels a connection with the former students. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
2 sides of the same coin: Ex-foster kids identify with residential school survivors

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip says the child welfare system takes Indigenous children from their families

Airport ground crew offload a plane carrying just under 300,000 doses of the single-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine which is developed by the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies at Pearson International Airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
1st batch of Johnson & Johnson vaccines won’t be released in Canada over quality concerns

The vaccines were quarantined in April before they were distributed to provinces

The arrest south of Winnipeg occurred before Bernier was to arrive at a protest in the city. (Twitter/Maxime Bernier)
Maxime Bernier arrested following anti-rules rallies in Manitoba: RCMP

He’s been charged with exceeding public gathering limits and violating Manitoba’s requirement to self-isolate

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives for the G7 Summit, at the airport in Newquay, United Kingdom, Thursday, June 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Details on Canada’s vaccine sharing plan coming Sunday, up to 100 million doses

Canada’s high commissioner to the UK says details will come after the G7 summit

Most Read