Four First Nations on Vancouver Island will move ahead with clean-energy projects, with three major projects coming from the North Island. 

The provincial government has granted more than $930,000 from the First Nations Clean Energy Business Fund. 

The funding is being distributed to four clean-energy projects this year, as well as 10 communities that will use the money to study the need and feasibility of clean-energy projects in those communities.

Funding for the FNCEBF helps Indigenous communities as they pursue clean-energy projects. The province says it also helps CleanBC, which gives British Columbians new opportunities o build a clean future while protecting the province’s air, land, and water.

The Tlatlasikwala First Nation and Kwikwasut’inuxw Haxwa’mis First Nation, both near Port Hardy, received funding. The Mowachaht Muchalaht First Nation near Gold River also received funds. 

Tlatlasikwala received a $194,205 grant to build a solar and wind power microgrid backed up by batteries, which will reduce the community’s reliance on diesel generators.

The Kwikwasut’inuxw Haxwa’mis First Nation received $170, 000 to help develop a hybrid smart-grid solar photovoltaic and battery system, which will provide a new and renewable source of clean-energy generation. The proposed system will supply about half of the Village of Gwa’yas’dums electrical needs, as well as 72 hours of power storage.

The system will also be able to offer emergency backup power and grid stability. 

The Mowachaht Muchalaht First Nation received $142, 285 to install heat-pump systems in its administration and recreation buildings. The province says the new system will increase energy efficiency by 200% to 300% with annual savings of more than $24, 000 on energy bills. 

The Kwakiutl  First Nation received $30, 000 to create a community energy plan. This will help identify opportunities for clean-energy projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.