Off grid, independent, solar PV systems are being deployed on remote cabins across the Athabasca delta.
This brings Fort Chipewyan residents clean, reliable energy to remote cabins.
- Hunting and fishing is an integral part of Indigenous culture and many Fort Chipewyan residents have remote cabins in Northern Alberta.
- These cabins traditionally have had no power and have relied on gasoline generators.
- Generators emit toxic fumes, greenhouse gases, create excessive noise and require fuel to be continually transported to the location.
- By installing solar PV’s with batteries, the residents have created a cleaner, more comfortable environment.
How the Program Started
- The program started with questions from elders about solar energy, to see if it made sense for their community.
- 3NE’s massive 2.2 Mw solar farm was a very significant advancement for the community but not interesting on an individual basis.
- The elders wanted to know how to get solar into individual’s hands on the land they traditionally hunted and fished.
What Has Been Done So Far
- The program started with the ACFN, however, after the other nations witnessed the benefits of solar on the land, the program now includes all 3 nations: the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation, the Mikisew Cree First Nation and Fort Chipewyan Metis Association.
- The 1st year saw solar PV installations at 28 cabins.
- The program has also given an opportunity to training local people on building and maintaining solar PV systems.
- The completed solar PV installations and owner satisfaction has generated interest in continuing the program.
- This will give opportunity to train more community members in a trade that will only grow in the future and help support more solar within the community.
- The program’s objective is to include every Fort Chipewyan cabin in the program, however this is subject to future funding.