Pesakastew Solar Project 

Solar Project

Project Update

In late 2018, George Gordon First Nation, Star Blanket Cree Nation and Natural Forces Inc. entered into a formal partnership to develop, construct, own and operate a 10MW solar generation project. The partnership chose Pesakastew or “rising-sun” as the partnership name. 

In September of 2019, FNPA received a formal project submission from the Pesâkâstêw partnership. The proposal submission was approved by SaskPower in January 2020. The project has a targeted commercial operation date of 2021 and are well on their way to achieving this milestone.

  • Project Owner: Starblanket Cree Nation (Red Dog Holdings) George Gordon First Nation (George Gordon Developments)

  • Type: Solar

  • Size: 10MW

  • Location: Weyburn, Saskatchewan

  • Environmental Benefit: Long term supply of emissions free electricity

Indigenous Benefits from Project

Indigenous Equity Ownership

Indigenous Equity Ownership

The project is 51% owned by the First Nations. 25.5% by George Gordon First Nation (GGFN) through their economic development arm and 25.5% owned by Starblanket Cree Nation (SBCN) through their economic development arm. The equity ownership will generate revenue for each of the communities to reinvest in economic development, community development, education and training, and other opportunities for future renewable energy and other projects that will benefit their communities.

Project Governance

Project Governance

The PSLP Board is governed by four Board Members, one seat will be from George Gordon and one seat will be from Starblanket Cree Nation. This will allow significant decision making to the First Nations on the project. It also allows for capacity building in project management, project governance, project finance and other areas that are valuable to the First Nations on this project and their other business and community ventures.

Contracting Opportunities

Contracting Opportunities

On this project, the First Nations and their partner are aiming for as close to 100% as possible, of the contracting opportunities to be awarded to First Nations companies. So far, a variety of companies owned by GGFN and SBCN have been involved in the project. A First Nations company was awarded the environmental work. The EPC contract is planned to go to a partnership between Starblanket Cree Nation and ONEC Group of Companies. These contract opportunities offer a wealth of additional financial, business development, employment, and capacity building opportunities to the First Nation and their companies.

Capacity Building for Indigenous Technicians and Leaders

Capacity Building for Indigenous Technicians and Leaders

The project partners will use part of the revenue generated to support one individual from the communities to participate in the Catalyst 20/20 Program for each of the years that the project is in operation. The 20/20 Catalysts Program is a hands-on program designed to support Indigenous communities embarking on clean energy projects. Working collaboratively with the guidance of Indigenous leaders and clean energy practitioners from across the country, Catalysts will gain the skills and tools needed to maximize the social and economic benefits communities gain through clean energy initiatives.

Education and Training

Education and Training

The PSLP is committed to training, education and capacity building throughout each stage of the project cycle. Currently, leaders from each of the communities are involved in the development of the project. First Nations members will be trained and hired for the construction of the project and throughout the operations and maintenance period as well.