Since 2017, OFNTSC has been providing training and building the capacities of energy focal points across First Nations communities in Ontario on energy planning and energy projects implementation.
- In 2019/2020, community energy champions have undergone the capacity building activities through three regional in-class and field training sessions.
- Since, 2017, 60 community energy focal points were engaged.
- 90% of workshop participants said they benefitted from OFNTSC training
KEY ACCOMPLISHMENTS IN 2019/2020:
- Curriculum development: OFNTSC developed modular, hands-on, exercise-based curriculum on energy fundamentals, units & measurements, baselines & benchmarks, energy efficiency & conservation cost assessments and energy audits. The curriculum is specifically designed to meet First Nations energy needs and priorities. The training contents aligns well with OFNTSC’s organization objectives to support community development and wellness through focused, comprehensive, and sustainable solutions. (I have mentioned in the above narratives about the OFNTSC strategies 2, 3, 4)
- Building Capacities: In partnership with the Independent Electricity Systems Operator (IESO), OFNTSC delivers technical and hands-on training to the IESO’s Community Energy Champions (CECs) through a multi-module curriculum encompassing demonstrations of energy generation opportunities, project management skills and tools, community engagement strategies, as well as developing a community energy plan. Knowledge mobilization and awareness tools, such as fact sheets, flyers, and magnets are developed to raise awareness on energy cost savings at household and at the community level. The capacity building project will continue until 2023. (OFNTSC strategies 2, 3, 4)
- Innovative solutions: OFNTSC strives to scope new and innovative solutions to meet local community needs. In line with OFNTSC’s strategies 2,3, 4, OFNTSC initiated a project with IESO to develop and deliver a foundational and integrated research and training activity on Waste to Energy (WtE). The project intends to meet dual purposes of community energy and solid waste management with multi-faceted strategies and collective benefits in the two sectors. The WtE system will take a sustainable development and management approach using technology and knowledge resources.
- Building community of practice: Over the years, OFNTSC has supported youth leadership in developing skills to undertake community energy projects with confidence. The ongoing and conitued engagement with the energy focal points through both, face to face and digital platforms that incldues speaking and presenting community energy project success stories at conferences, sharing project updates through the social media, and learning opportunities through webinars has evolved in a community of practice on energy management. This has further enhanced effective partnerships and networking among the communities, funders, and industry stakeholders.
Roopa Rakshit is an Environmental Scientist at Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC).
GOALS FOR 2020-2021:
- Continued technical guidance in developing energy plans and implementation projects
- Raise awareness on energy conservation
- Enhance partnerships between energy focal points and the industry stakeholders for effective networking and knowledge mobilization
- Celebrate community energy success stories