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    Alberta First Nations Invest in Gas Power Plant


Investment backed by provincial agency

by: Dale Lunan

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Alberta First Nations Invest in Gas Power Plant

A group of six Alberta First Nations is investing C$93mn (US$70mn) in a $1.5bn, 900 MW gas-fired combined cycle power plant west of the province’s capital being developed by Kineticor Resources.

The investment is being made through a holding company owned by Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation, Enoch Cree Nation, Kehewin Cree Nation, O’Chiese First Nation, Paul First Nation and Whitefish Lake First Nation.

The Alberta Indigenous Opportunities Corporation (AIOC), created by the provincial government to support the participation of indigenous communities in major energy projects, will guarantee a loan taken by the First Nations for the investment.

“We are pleased to have supported this transaction in the Cascade power project, that provides significant benefit to the six First Nation investors,” AIOC CEO Alicia DuBois said. “This investment is based on commercial terms and has met all other AIOC criteria.”

It’s the first investment project approved by the AIOC, which was created with a loan guarantee portfolio of up to $1bn to help reduce the cost of capital for indigenous groups and make it easier for them to raise capital to invest in energy projects.

“This idea has been decades in the making, and it is rewarding to see it come to fruition with this first deal out of the AIOC,” Rick Wilson, Alberta’s minister of indigenous relations, said. “The focus has always been to achieve indigenous involvement in the economy, bringing them in as partners in prosperity.”