Ktunaxa Nation Council proceeding with renewable energy installation

The grid-tied, 40 kW, 119-solar-panel system will generate 45,000 kWh of electricity annually

Government building

The Ktunaxa Nation Council has announced it is partnering with Columbia Basin Trust, Accelerate Kootenays and Solar Now — Photo courtesy KPI Media

The Ktunaxa Nation Council (KNC) has announced it is partnering with Columbia Basin Trust, Accelerate Kootenays and Solar Now to install solar arrays on the rooftop of the Ktunaxa Nation Government Building (KNGB) in Cranbrook.

The grid-tied, 40 kW, 119-solar-panel system will generate 45,000 kWh of electricity annually and over one million kWh in its 25 year lifespan. This solar energy production will offset a portion of the power required by the Ktunaxa Nation Government Building. The energy produced by the solar system is equivalent to the electricity used by four homes each year. It will also provide power to an electric vehicle charging station that will be installed on site at the KNGB as part of the Accelerate Kootenays project. The siting of the charging station will provide opportunity for residents and visitors to learn more about the Ktunaxa Nation, and to consider the relationship between sustainable energy production and transportation.

“This project represents a significant opportunity to not only build renewable energy for the KNGB but also raise awareness on the positive effects on the environment of using electric vehicles, and the cost savings with low-level impact of solar power generation,” said Don Maki, Ktunaxa Nation Council Facilities and Capital Acquisitions Manager. The Ktunaxa Nation Council has been actively working to build stronger relationships in the region, working with all levels of government and industry to advance as a self-governing Nation. This project exemplifies true reconciliatory action as expressed through the shared vision of its partners.

“As passionate stewards of the land and water, the Ktunaxa Nation is excited to form a partnership with Solar Now, Columbia Basin Trust and Accelerate Kootenays on the generation of clean and renewable solar energy,” said Darrin Jamieson, Ktunaxa Nation Council CAO. “We will continue to uphold our values of environmental preservation. Through harvesting the sun’s energy, we can demonstrate to all people living on Ktunaxa ʔamakʔis that we can move towards autonomy through collaboration and sustainable partnerships.” Project completion and a day of celebration are planned for September 23, 2017. Be sure to visit www.ktunaxa.org for more information on the project.

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