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Meadow Lake Tribal Council clean energy project to power thousands of homes

Crown Investments Corporation (CIC) of Saskatchewan sells 25 per cent stake in Meadow Lake forestry mill.
The Meadow Lake Tribal Council Bioenergy Centre will use sawmill biomass residuals to produce 6.6 megawatts of carbon-neutral green energy – enough to power roughly 5,000 homes. Martin Bernetti / Getty Images

A major energy project in Meadow Lake, Sask., aims to decrease greenhouse gas emissions while generating carbon-neutral green power for thousands of homes, it was announced on Wednesday.

The Meadow Lake Tribal Council (MLTC) Bioenergy Centre will use sawmill biomass residuals to produce 6.6 megawatts of baseload electricity – enough to power roughly 5,000 homes officials said.

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It is expected to decrease greenhouse gas emissions by more than one million tonnes over 25 years, along with reducing smoke and other harmful matters.

“Transitioning to cleaner power is essential to protecting the environment, creating more sustainable communities and building a clean future for our kids and grandkids,” said Carolyn Bennett, the federal minister of Crown-Indigenous relations.

“This important Indigenous–owned project will create good middle-class jobs, boost regional economic growth and serve as a model for communities across Saskatchewan looking to transition to renewable energy and promote a greener way of life for all Canadians.”

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MLTC Chief Richard Ben said the project will enable it to create ongoing economic opportunities for their people.

“Through this kind of affirmative action, Canada and Saskatchewan demonstrate their commitment to ensuring ongoing and sustained participation of Indigenous communities in green energy infrastructure development, climate change mitigation, improving environmental outcomes and supporting our local forestry-based economy in the Meadow Lake area,” Ben said.

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Revenues from the plant will also support child and family services, education, health, and youth development for the nine First Nations who make up the MLTC officials said.

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The Canadian government is contributing $52.5 million to the project.