CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Dec. 16, 2013) - Nodin Kitagan Limited Partnership and Nodin Kitagan 2 Limited Partnership (together "Nodin Kitagan") today announced that the Ontario Ministry of the Environment has granted a Renewable Energy Approval ("REA") for the 58.32 megawatt Bow Lake Wind Project ("Bow Lake"). Nodin Kitagan is a partnership between Batchewana First Nation ("BFN") and BluEarth Renewables Inc. ("BluEarth") and represents one of the largest economic partnerships between a First Nation and a wind energy developer in Canada.
Bow Lake is being developed in the district of Algoma, approximately 80 km north of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario within the traditional territory of BFN.
"The Renewable Energy Approval is the culmination of over six years of public engagement and rigorous environmental and technical studies. We are very pleased to be moving forward towards the construction of the Bow Lake Wind Project," said Kent Brown, President & CEO of BluEarth.
"The Bow Lake Wind Project is perfectly aligned with our original expectations at Treaty time; those expectations were to benefit from our resources in sustainable ways. The BFN will continue to affirm, and benefit from the Letter of Assertions, which outlines our First Nations' expected relationship with resource developers. This assertion was the foundation for our relationship with our partner, BluEarth Renewables, and we couldn't be more pleased with the outcome," said Batchewana First Nation Chief Dean Sayers.
Once constructed, Bow Lake will generate enough renewable electricity for approximately 15,000 homes. Nodin Kitagan estimates that Bow Lake will employ approximately 80 people to construct the facility and once constructed, up to seven people will be required to operate the facility. Beyond job creation during construction, operations and decommissioning, the project will also generate considerable investment in the local economy through procurement of supplies and services.
"This is an example of how Ontario's commitment to moving the province toward a clean energy future can result in First Nations and the private sector working collaboratively with mutual respect to create new, sustainable and high-quality jobs in Ontario," Brown went on to say.
About Nodin Kitagan Limited Partnerships
In 2012, Batchewana First Nation and BluEarth formed partnerships to develop of the Bow Lake Wind Project through establishment of Nodin Kitagan Limited Partnership and Nodin Kitagan 2 Limited Partnership. The Bow Lake Wind Project will be developed by the partnerships by their respective general partners Shongwish Nodin Kitagan GP Corp. and Shongwish Nodin Kitagan 2 GP Corp. This relationship currently represents one of the largest economic partnerships between a First Nation and a wind energy developer in Canada.
About Batchewana First Nation
A self-supporting, self-reliant, sovereign First Nation where individuals share a strong cultural identity based on a deep understanding of who we are on a clear sense of continuity with our cultural roots.
Where the Reserve communities have truly come together and whose members have a strong sense of self-esteem, respect for each other and who work together for the betterment of all.
About BluEarth Renewables Inc.
Headquartered in Calgary, Canada, BluEarth is a private independent renewable power producer, focused on the acquisition, development, construction and operation of wind, water, and solar projects in North America, with a primary focus in Canada. With the most experienced renewable energy development team in Canada, BluEarth's mission is to be the Canadian renewable energy leader by developing, building, and operating a portfolio that optimizes people, planet, and profit. BluEarth believes it has the power to change the future by demonstrating how to be sustainable and profitable, leaving the world a better place. For more information, visit bluearth.ca.
BluEarth Renewables Inc.
(403) 668-1575 x422
OTTAWA, Dec. 12, 2013 /CNW/ - Today the Honourable Bernard Valcourt, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, accompanied by Chief Robert Louie of the First Nations Land Advisory Board and Chief Austin Bear of the First Nations Land Management Resource Centre Inc. welcomed nine more First Nations into the First Nations Land Management Regime. By signing the Framework Agreement, these First Nation communities can now begin the process of opting out of 34 land-related sections of the Indian Act and assume greater control over their reserve land and resources.
"Our Government is committed to working with interested First Nations like those represented here today to create jobs and economic opportunities and also to achieve reconciliation between Canada and First Nations," said Minister Valcourt. "The First Nations Land Management Regime continues to be a proven and successful tool of economic development and reconciliation. We will continue to work with interested First Nations to enable the development of their lands and resources, ensuring the conditions for strong, self-sufficient and prosperous communities."
Economic Action Plan 2013 committed $9 million over two years for the expansion of the FNLM Regime to create opportunities for more First Nations to promote greater economic development on reserves. The Government of Canada is delivering on its commitment to provide the opportunity for more First Nations to pursue participation in the FNLM regime, building on the 28 entrants announced in September.
In a statement regarding the most recent signing ceremony, Chief Louie expressed that "This signing is absolutely wonderful. Adding more First Nations into Land Management will help propel much needed economic prosperity capabilities into the lives and communities of First Nations. Beneficiaries will include Canada, regional and local communities, and individual First Nation communities right across the country."
Chief Austin Bear spoke to the importance of this moment for the 28 new entrants. "The Framework Agreement provides a better future for our communities. It is a catalyst to self‐sufficiency, state of the art infrastructure, and governance models driven by our values and traditional ways." He added, "As a result of this historical and necessary initiative, First Nations working under their land codes are experiencing a profound increase of community involvement, pride, and the strengthening of our cultural identities. I commend Canada and Minister Valcourt on their continued support of the First Nations here today. In 1996 there were 14 signatory First Nations; soon there will be 110 communities once the 28 new entrants have signed their adhesion documents. However, our goal continues. Chief Louie and I will continue to work towards seeing all First Nations given the opportunity to opt out of the Indian Act and resume jurisdiction over reserve lands and resources."
The FNLM regime enables First Nations to manage their own land, resources and environment according to their own land codes, laws and policies. The regime also helps First Nations get out from under 34 land-related limitations of the Indian Act in order to take control of their land and resources. The new First Nations signing on to the Framework Agreement include:
Ontario: Chippewas of the Thames, Temagami and Wasauksing
Manitoba: Fisher River
British Columbia: Chawathil, Katzie, Cheam and Scowlitz
The next step in the process for these communities is to develop their own land codes and have them approved by their membership through community ratification votes in order to become operational under the FNLM Regime. Once approved, these communities would join the 66 other First Nation communities active in the FNLM Regime that are currently operating under or developing their own land codes.
Improving economic opportunities for Aboriginal people is a priority for the Government of Canada. In June 2009, the Government released the Federal Framework for Aboriginal Economic Development, which represents a fundamental change to how the federal government supports Aboriginal economic development. The Framework emphasizes strengthening entrepreneurship, enhancing the value of Aboriginal assets, and forging new and effective partnerships to maximize the economic development potential of Aboriginal people in Canada.
First Nations Land Management Regime
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