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Clean energy revenues flow to three First Nations

Press Release –

LILLOOET – A new agreement with the B.C. government will allow three First Nations to share provincial revenue from the Jamie Creek Hydroelectric Project: the Bridge River Indian Band, the N’Quatqua First Nation and the T’it’q’et Nation.

The revenue-sharing agreement is through B.C.’s First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund, which promotes increased First Nations’ participation in the clean energy sector.

Developed by Borolex Inc., the Jamie Creek Hydro Project is 18 kilometres west of Gold Bridge near Downton Lake. It is a run-of-river generating facility with an estimated capacity of 22.2 megawatts. Completed in June 2014, the facility will generate an estimated 70 gigawatts annually, enough to power over 6,000 homes. The project is covered by a 40-year electricity purchase agreement with BC Hydro that includes a 20-year renewal option.

Once the project is fully operational, the provincial revenue-sharing to the First Nations is forecast to be $60,000 per year over the life of the project.

This brings to 47 the number of non-treaty agreements between First Nations and the provincial government, since the BC Jobs Plan was launched in 2011. The plan supports economic opportunities for both First Nations and neighbouring communities.

Quotes:

John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation –

“Revenue-sharing agreements like these enable First Nations to participate in economic development and bring benefits more quickly to Aboriginal communities. Our government is committed to building positive and lasting relationships with First Nations, as well as partnering with First Nations to help address socio-economic gaps for the benefit of all British Columbians.”

Chief Kevin Whitney, T’it’q’et Nation –

“The clean energy initiative program is an important part of reconciliation for First Nations. T’it’q’et is encouraged by the potential of minimizing environmental impact and maximizing efficient and cost-effective alternative-energy resources. We look forward to other opportunities with the provincial government.”

Jackie Tegart, MLA for Fraser-Nicola –

“As the MLA for Fraser-Nicola, I am proud to show my support for this exciting joint initiative between First Nations, the Province, and industry partners. British Columbia was the first jurisdiction in Canada to share revenue from the resource industry with First Nations, and it is my hope that we will continue to build on these solid partnerships moving forward.

Bill Bennett, Minister of Energy and Mines –

“First Nations and their partners continue to support the clean energy sector in their traditional territories. These agreements provide jobs, and show what can be accomplished through collaboration. By demonstrating leadership in the growing clean energy sector, First Nations are bringing economic benefits to their communities.”

Patrick Lemaire, CEO, Borolex Inc. –

“The Jamie Creek project and the associated revenue-sharing agreements demonstrate the positive impact that these renewable energy projects have on local communities. We are committed to building positive and long lasting relationships with First Nations. Our partnerships on Jamie Creek with the local First Nations has provided an opportunity to participate in local economic development, and has provided long-term benefits to both Boralex and the local First Nation communities.”

Quick Facts:

  • British Columbia is the first province to share revenue from mining, forestry and other resources with First Nations. The B.C. government is committed to continue working in partnership with First Nations to stimulate investment, create jobs and provide economic benefits for First Nations and all British Columbians.
  • The First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund provides money to build capacity in First Nations communities and invest in clean energy infrastructure.
  • Through the revenue-sharing agreements, participating First Nations will receive a share of water rentals and land rents charged by the Province for licences issued to the power developer for the life of a project.
  • Since 2011, the provincial government has invested approximately $5.1 million in capacity and equity funding to support clean energy opportunities in 80 Aboriginal communities throughout B.C., including wind energy, biomass, run-of-river hydroelectric power and clean energy planning.
  • The clean-energy technology industry is one of the fastest growing industries in B.C., with more than 200 organizations, 68% of which were formed in the past decade.

Learn More:

For more information about the First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund visit:www.gov.bc.ca/arr/economic/fncebf.html

Media Contacts:

Lisa Leslie
Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation
250 213-7724

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