The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe seeks to develop renewable energy supporting the Tribe and Tribal facilities. The Band sought to develop a Solar Energy Master Plan to determine the potential and to establish an implementation plan for solar pv at all primary Tribal facilities. This Master Plan effort, for all subject tribal government facilities:
Collected annual energy use data, calculated EUI and performance evaluation against ENERGY STAR/ B3 peers
Evaluated the viability of solar pv
Developed a detailed solar pv concept design, calculated annual energy generation possible, and developed preliminary project budgets
Developed a Solar PV Master Plan report summarizing all findings, identifying Tribal economic development potential of solar pv development, and proposed a solar implementation plan for Tribally owned facilities.
The Tribe worked with paleBLUEdot to conduct the research and establish a long-range solar pv implementation plan for Tribal facilities. Funding for this site assessment was provided by a 2017 Minnesota Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) Seed Grant combined with in-kind donation of time and materials by paleBLUEdot LLC.
The study identified over 2.15 megawatts of high-performance solar pv installation potential. Beyond the long-term operational cost savings potential of solar pv at these facilities, these arrays represent economic and environmental benefit for the Band as well.
The 2.15 megawatts of priority solar array potential represents a potential for 24 construction phase jobs and 4 long-term maintenance jobs for Band members. In addition, the collection of all solar array potentials identified in the report represent a life-time environmental payback of over 38,000 metric tons of avoided greenhouse gas emissions and over 558 million gallons of avoided water use.