Tribes and Alaska Native Villages feel the brunt of a changing climate in direct and significant ways that undermine their cultures, economies, and the overall general welfare of their citizens. Unfortunately, they are too frequently left out of federal and state climate preparedness and resilience efforts, both in terms of planning and disaster response. And they generally lack sufficient governmental capacity and financial resources to prepare for and respond to major climate-related events on their own.
Secretary Moniz traveled to Arizona last week for a summit with tribal leaders, part of our work to build upon President Obama’s commitment to strengthen the government-to-government relationship with tribal nations.
A resource in central Alaska is showing promise for geothermal development—the renewable energy that draws on Earth’s natural heat for electricity and other uses. The myriad benefits of this clean, domestic power source make geothermal exploration an attractive proposition for this state, where off-grid demand means that Alaskans often use expensive, polluting diesel power.
This White House Council on Women and Girls blog discusses a report released on Nov. 12 that delves into the inequities and distinct challenges facing women of color, while examining some of the efforts underway to close unfair gaps in educational outcomes, pay, career opportunity, health disparities, and more.
MG2 Tribal Energy, a joint venture between the Mesa Grande Band of Mission Indians and commercial wind developer Geronimo Energy, is the first tribal entity to sign a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the federal government. The groundbreaking deal marks the largest wind energy purchase from a single source in federal contracting history.
Change doesn’t happen on its own. It’s led by dedicated and passionate people who are committed to empowering Indian Country to energize future generations. Leading the Charge is a regular feature spotlighting the movers and shakers in energy on tribal lands.
The Lakeview Lodge is the heart of Minto, a small Alaska Native village 126 miles northwest of Fairbanks. The 12,000-square-foot building is used daily for school and senior lunch programs, community meetings, and village council operations.
“It is critical to the community,” said Bessie Titus, Administrator for the Minto Village Council, which represents 210 residents.
Challenge: Situated on nearly 12,000 acres in the heart of Western Oregon’s scenic coastal range, the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde Community of Oregon has a strong connection to the earth and nature and a deep commitment to environmental stewardship. Landless from 1954 until 1983 when the Grand Ronde Restoration Act returned a portion of its land base, the Tribe has faced an uphill climb building out the infrastructure and services required to support and sustain its community of approximately 5,000 members.
In Alaska, many Native villages and regional corporations are pursuing energy efficiency and renewable energy projects as part of their long-term strategies for lowering energy costs and increasing energy security. The DOE Office of Indian Energy is rolling out a pilot Energy Ambassadors Program in Fiscal Year 2015 that will respond directly to that need in Alaska.