First, Minister of Natural Resources Jonathan Wilkinson announced an investment of nearly $260,000 to build community capacity through Indigenous energy champions in Ontario.
Second, IESO’s Indigenous energy-supporting programming includes technical, hands-on training for Community Energy Champions (CECs) who have been hired by Indigenous communities and organizations across Ontario to advance clean energy projects within their community.
Third, Natural Resources Canada funding will build on the IESO’s current CEC program to help plan and advance community-driven energy-related priorities.
Every community deserves to have access to the resources they need to reduce emissions, increase energy efficiency and displace fossil fuels. That is why the Government of Canada is committed to working with Indigenous communities to build the necessary capacity and acquire the skills and expertise needed to advance clean energy and low-carbon energy solutions. Today’s investment in IESO’s clean energy champions program is a step forward, providing the foundational tools required to achieve community-led clean energy priorities.
Clean energy solutions
Moreover, the CEC training will integrate initiatives and objectives proposed by the communities and organizations. Also, it will provide the CECs with the foundational knowledge to implement clean energy solutions..
In addition, the multi-module curriculum will also include demonstrations of home energy audits, establishing an energy baseline, building retrofits, energy generation opportunities, community engagement strategies, and developing or updating community energy plans.
Finally, this investment demonstrates the Government of Canada’s commitment to supporting Indigenous leadership. It also remotes communities in Ontario as they develop innovative clean energy solutions to displace fossil fuels, advance self-determination, and combat climate change.
Energy in Canada
Canada’s oil and gas sector has invested billions in the research and development of clean technologies. Meanwhile, average emissions per barrel in the oil sands have been going down each year for more than a decade. Total emissions are expected to start going down in the next five years.
Canada is also a leader in methane emissions reduction. Alberta’s oil and gas industry reduced total methane emissions by 34% between 2014 and 2020. Producers across the country are expected to meet the target to reduce emissions by 40-45% in 2025.
Carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) technology is already in use in Canada. And a massive expansion of the technology is now in its early stages. CCS is a key part of how Canada’s oil sands industry plans to achieve its goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.