Energy Projects

Aboriginal Business Network has been involved with First Nations in the development of renewable energy projects for the past twenty years and has participated directly in projects involving run-of-the-river, wind and solar.  Our experiences have included pre-feasiblity studies, negotiation of participatory rights, negotiations of permits, benefits agreements, feasibility studies, business plans, negotiations of partnerships including with private sector developers, financing and project management.

Our current projects include:

  1. The construction of a five megawatt solar project that is one hundred percent owned by the First Nation.  We have participated in all aspects of this project including project application, community engagement, pre-feasibility, business plan, funding applicaitons, financing, project management and negotiation of the long-term operations and management agreement.  Our team has been very active in assisting the First Nation with their project and working with Chief and Council and Senior Administration to ensure that the interests of the First Nation are protected and that they can receive the maximum benefits they can from this project;
  2. The construction of a sixty megawatt wind project that is fifty percent owned by a First Nation.  This nearly $250 million dollar project has required the Private Developer and First Nation to work hand-in-hand to develop a strong business relationship and level of trust in one another that will ensure the long-term success of this project.  Our involvement has included community engagement, external engagement, negotiations of the business partnership, funding applications, permitting, benefits agreement, management services agreement.  We have also been active in reviewing a large suite of reports related to the energy approvals process and have provided advise on the quality and significance of each report;
  3. The planning for a run-of-the-river project that is being proposed between a large Private Developer and two First Nations.  While we work exclusively for one of the two First Nation partners our role is to ensure that the First Nation interest in the project is adequately represented during the planning and development processes.  To this extent we have been involved with community engagement, pre-feasibility, discussions related to the form of the partnership and participatory rights and in the on-going management of the relationship with the large Private Developer;
  4. The planning for the participation of several First Nations in the application process for Feed-in-Tariff (FIT) 2.0 Contract Rollout expected in the fall of 2012.  To date our main role has been to education First Nations and Developers about FIT 2.0 and to work with them to develop a business model that ensures compliance with the rules regarding FIT 2.0.  At the present time we have discussed the opportunities from FIT with several developers and First Nations and are now assisting them with partnership discussions and financial modelling.

Part of our role is to ensure that the First Nation also takes the appropriate measures to ensure that it protects its tax-exempt status while participating and we work very closely with the First Nation and its tax advisors to ensure that all of the necessary steps are taken to protect those interests.

ABN was also instrumental in helping one First Nation achieve its letter of offer from the Ontario Finance Authority and continues to work with another First Nation on getting through this process.

We are also engaged with our other First Nations about their energy project requirements and one of the prior projects that we worked on during its initial start-up phase is now nearing completion.

© Aboriginal Business Network 2015