The Tsleil-Waututh First Nation in North Vancouver has started building a solar energy project for their administrative building.
The project is scheduled to be completed in two months, and it will be one of the largest solar energy projects on Vancouver’s North Shore.
“It’s green energy,” said Chief Leah George-Wilson. “It’s in line with [the] Tsleil-Waututh Nation’s values of environmental stewardship and economic sustainability.”
It’s not their first solar project. A panel installed at a daycare centre on the reserve in 2014 produces 40 kilowatts of power, enough for 90 per cent of the community’s needs.
This project, however, is larger.
“It’s 134 kilowatts. It’s five solar panels offsetting 120 tonnes of CO2. If more people had electric cars, we’d be able to power a million kilometres of electricity for electric vehicles,” said George-Wilson.
The solar project at the newly constructed administrative building will save $29,800 per year in power bills.
“This is just the start,” she said. “We’d really like our people to consider other forms of energy in lots of things that we do.”
The Tsleil-Waututh First Nation has been a vocal opponent of the Trans Mountain pipeline. It was a party to the lawsuit, recently struck down by the Supreme Court, challenging the federal government’s decision on the pipeline project.