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Sep 12, 2023
MNA releases video announcing name chosen by Citizens for MCSP at the 2023 AGA
Smoky Lake, AB (September 7, 2023) The Métis Nation of Alberta (MNA) is announcing the official name for its Métis Crossing Solar Project (MCSP), Salay Prayzaan, which is Michif for “gift from the sun.” At its recent Annual General Assembly (AGA), the MNA revealed the name chosen from among over 90 Citizen recommendations submitted through a social media contest. The winning entry was submitted by MNA Citizen Sheri Gnadt. To mark this exciting occasion, the MNA presented a video during the AGA to introduce the newly selected name.
“The name of the solar farm, Salay Prayzaan or ‘gift from the sun,’ perfectly captures the spirit of the project, as Métis people have always regarded nature with deep respect and appreciation,” said MNA Director of Environment and Climate Change, Andres Filella. “MNA Citizens, especially MNA youth, feel strongly about producing energy from renewable sources and mitigating the impacts of climate change for future generations. Building sustainable energy solutions allows us to co-exist with nature in a way that honours Métis values.”
Salay Prayzaan, the MNA-owned community-generation solar project, is located at Métis Crossing— Alberta’s first major Métis cultural interpretive destination. It materialized from a collaboration between the MNA, the Town of Smoky Lake, and Smoky Lake County, and several industry partners, including Carvel Electric, a Métis-owned company. The 4.86-megawatt solar farm was designed to fit in with the ongoing development of Métis Crossing and is a key initiative under the MNA Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP).
The project will result in greenhouse gas emission reductions of approximately 4,700 tonnes of carbon dioxide-equivalent during its first year in operation. It will produce enough energy to offset the electricity load of all MNA buildings and MNA affiliate operations across the province, the equivalent to powering nearly 1,200 Alberta homes.
The MNA-led solar farm will contribute to the Town of Smoky Lake and Smoky Lake County through tax revenue, local economic activity, and contributions to a local community development fund.
“We’re extremely proud that Salay Prayzaan is 100 per cent MNA-owned. The project, which is the MNA’s largest solar project, represents a significant step forward for climate action, Métis sovereignty and self-sufficiency,” said Filella. “We’re also excited that Salay Prayzaan is bringing extensive economic benefits to our partners in the Smoky Lake community.”
Salay Prayzaan builds on the MNA’s existing microgeneration solar portfolio, which already boasts a capacity of 530-kilowatt direct current at 37 sites across Alberta, including at MNA and MNA-affiliate offices and housing units. The sites have the capacity to produce enough energy annually to offset 300 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent per year.
Construction of the Salay Prayzaan solar project began in the fall of 2022, with a target completion date of fall 2023.
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