Native Sun Community Power Development, which is Minneapolis-based non-profit and over two dozen of its partners will use a recently awarded $6.67 million from the US Department of Energy Vehicle Technologies Office to connect Red Lake, Standing Rock, as well as other tribal countries throughout the upper Midwest with the electronic vehicle charging stations.
In a statement, Bob Blake, Native Sun Executive Director remarked, “This is a terrific example of direct federal expenditure on new infrastructure in neglected regions.” “We hope to see more initiatives like this replicated across the country with additional indigenous communities and reservations,” says Native Sun.
The Department of Energy (DOE) awarded $200 million to groups around the United States, based on project viability, beneficial impact, and other factors. According to a press conference with Jennifer Granholm, DOE Secretary and Kamala Harris, Vice President of the United States Native Sun earned the largest grant.
The project will add Electric vehicle charging stations on regularly traveled pathways from Red Lake and Standing Rock Nations to the critical destinations as well as along Native American Scenic Byway as an asset for those that are in the upper Midwest region, according to a release. It is expected to begin in early 2022 and take place over a three-year funding period.
The Standing Rock Renewable Energy Power Authority, American Lung Association, Red Lake Fishery, Otter Tail Power, Xcel Energy, and Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, among other project partners, will assist with the installation of these stations.
59 fast-charging centers, as well as 63 level two electric car charging stations, will be installed by these partners. Additional education and outreach will take place at 52 events over three years, with the goal of reaching more than 10,000 people to support EV adoption.
“Each company brings a distinct skill to the table,” Blake added. It appears that bringing together a charging network is a fantastic idea. But how is this going to be put into practice? That’s when we call in some specialists.” Tribal schools, governments, utilities, and businesses will use the project to install 19 new electric vehicles and supporting equipment.
Blake is a Red Lake Nation member, despite the fact that he now resides in Minneapolis. As a result, he is keen to deliver not only greener energy to rural and small towns but also more economic development.
“This is just the beginning,” Blake said, “and maybe we’ll be able to build on economic development by extending similar networks to little villages.” “When individuals go shopping, eat out, stay at a hotel, and have EV stations as an alternative to reduce their carbon impact, it’s beneficial for local economies.” According to Blake, sales of electric vehicles have increased dramatically since 2011, and charging networks are being built across the United States.