SIX NATIONS – Six Nations and the County of Brant announced the completion of a solar panel project constructed on the roof top of the Oneida Business Park on Friday, October 2.
After the Thanksgiving Address and Haudenosaunee Sky Dancers performed, words from several important members of the Six Nations of the Grand River Development Corporation (SNDC) and the County of Brant spoke in regards to the completion of the 500 kilowatt solar panel project.
The project will generate 500 kilowatts of energy using the 2,307 solar panels, and is expected to generate no less than $2.5 million dollars in consolidated net cash flow to the community in the next 20 years. This project has also allowed direct employment of Six Nations members to complete the installation, and the project is the first solar investment located within the Six Nations community that is sponsored by the Six Nations Elected Council and the Six Nations Development Corporation.
Chief Ava Hill spoke on Six Nations’ commitment to clean energy.
“We really appreciate the partnership with our neighbours and we hope that we can have more joint ventures as time goes on,” said Hill. “We are, as well, involved with several other renewable energy projects, like we are partners with Samsung and just last July we did the opening of the largest, still the largest solar farm in the country,” she explained. “So, Six Nations is certainly doing its part in climate change.”
Mayor Ron Eddy spoke in high regards of the partnership with Six Nations.
“We are thrilled to be celebrating the ribbon cutting of the 500 kw Roof Top Solar Project in partnership with our neighbour Six Nations and that’s a very meaningful expression,” said Eddy. “This mutually beneficial partnership project is an excellent example of the economic, social and environmental benefits to both communities. It has also provided employment opportunities to residents in Six Nations and the County of Brant, and far beyond that,” he said. “Both Six Nations and the County of Brant have received provincial recognition towards building sustainable communities, within the next five years it is likely that both communities will be exporting renewable energy, isn’t that terrific when you think about it?” Said Eddy.
MPP Dave Levac offered words to encourage the type of determination that went into completing the project, which began in May.
“This is a perfect example of something that I believe we’ve all learned in kindergarten. We all learned how to play in the sand box together,” said Levac with a smile. “Share, play together and make sure that no one gets left behind and this is a perfect example of those adults in the room that came together and said ‘it’s time for us to use a different tactic, because the stuff we were doing before wasn’t working,’” he said. “This is going to go beyond the economy, this is going to go beyond the environment; this is groundbreaking and this has turned a negative into a positive.”