News Release - February 7, 2005
IMPROVED ENERGY EFFICIENT HOMES FOR FIRST NATIONS
The Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), with funding from Communities of Tomorrow, is working with the Agency Chiefs Tribal Council (ACTC) to improve the quality of homes available for First Nations communities in Saskatchewan. The project focuses on improving the energy efficiency, durability, comfort and sustainability of manufactured homes for First Nations communities, while reducing the cost of construction.
"The government of Saskatchewan is very committed to energy conservation and to building a green Saskatchewan," Minister responsible for SRC Eric Cline said. "SRC is making strides in its work to provide energy efficiency solutions for housing in all communities."
SRC's Building Performance group will work with First Nations homebuilder AC Realty Ltd., a subsidiary of Agency Chiefs Tribal Council, to design and build a demonstration house that will use 35 per cent less energy than a typical home manufactured by the homebuilder. The resulting design will have commercialization potential in communities across Canada.
Representatives from each organization and other stakeholders will be meeting in Leoville, Saskatchewan for a two-day information-sharing workshop. The group will work together to identify the design elements that could be improved upon and learn about energy-efficient products and methods that could be incorporated into the new design. The results of these sessions will become priorities in the design of the demonstration house.
Over the past few years, AC Realty has worked diligently to manufacture a home that addresses all First Nations homeowners' needs with a design that has many new features that prolong the life of a home.
"There are so many housing issues on First Nations lands and we cannot begin to address all of them. We know for a fact that many First Nations people in Canada are living in substandard homes that do not meet the needs of our people," ACTC Tribal Chief Lyle Whitefish said. "In a partnership with the Saskatchewan Research Council, together we will further refine the quality of our homes that address durability, sustainability and efficiency for all First Nations in Saskatchewan as well as the average homeowner. These solutions will also be utilized by the rest of Canada."
ACTC creates opportunities for First Nations people through education, economic development and other program areas that are intended to create a better life for the people of Big River, Pelican Lake and Witchekan.
Funding for this project includes $100,000 from Communities of Tomorrow, announced in November 2004, $125,000 in-kind from AC Realty Ltd., and $20,000 from SRC.
Editors Note: Media are invited to a brief presentation about current housing issues facing Saskatchewan First Nations communities at 9:00 a.m., Tuesday, Feb. 8th, 2005 in Leoville, (located north of Spiritwood on Highway 24). A tour of an AC Realty show home in Spiritwood, SK has been arranged after the briefing. Please RSVP as soon as possible.
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