Clean Energy and Economic Development Solutions for Communities
Natural Resources Canada
In recent years, many Indigenous communities from across Canada have developed and implemented a number of clean energy initiatives (e.g. solar, wind, biomass, hydroelectric) to not only provide power to their communities but also create jobs and economic development opportunities. Throughout the process, communities faced a number of challenges and barriers, having to navigate an often-complex system to realize these projects.
Challenges and barriers common to many projects can be both internal to the community and from external sources. Internal examples include ensuring community buy-in, having a dedicated champion(s), insufficient capacity (both institutional and human), and lack of infrastructure. External sources of challenges include confusing and complex funding systems, aggressive/unsolicited consultants, lack of long-term support, and regulatory hurdles.
Through this workshop, participants will hear first-hand experiences from project leads from Indigenous communities which have successfully implemented clean energy or economic development activities, particularly in the forest sector. Presenters will highlight their unique experiences and identify lessons learned through their projects.
What Participants will Learn by Attending
Participants will gain a better understanding of
- challenges and barriers Indigenous communities face on a regular basis when implementing a clean energy or economic development project.
- how other communities were able to navigate complex regulatory and bureaucratic systems,
- how to take this knowledge to identify ways to reduce these challenges and barriers for communities.