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INDIGENOUS PARTICIPATION IS IMPORTANT TO THE CANADIAN WIND ENERGY INDUSTRY, WITH OVER 35 COMMUNITIES ALREADY BENEFITTING FROM WIND PROJECTS

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INDIGENOUS PARTICIPATION IS IMPORTANT TO THE CANADIAN WIND ENERGY INDUSTRY, WITH OVER 35 COMMUNITIES ALREADY BENEFITTING FROM WIND PROJECTS

This article was written in 2019, prior to the July 1, 2020, creation of the Canadian Renewable Energy Association, which joined CanWEA with the Canadian Solar Industries Association.

Canada’s wind energy industry has been involved with and benefited over 35 Indigenous communities in the country. As the voice of the industry, the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) has been a supporter of Indigenous participation in Canadian wind projects. One of the ways that CanWEA has been active is by being a “Clean Energy Collaborator” with the innovative 20/20 Catalysts Program, which supports clean energy development in Indigenous communities. An example of this collaboration has included working with Catalysts like Chantelle Cardinal (2018 cohort) on convening Indigenous leaders at CanWEA events to enable meaningful discussions about the obstacles and opportunities for Indigenous involvement in wind energy projects. This collaboration is important, since “many of Alberta’s Indigenous communities are focused on opportunities to participate in the clean energy development occurring in their Traditional Territory and to creating opportunity on Reserve and on Settlement lands,” as Ms. Cardinal told CanWEA’s 2019 Spring Forum in Banff, Alberta. In recognition of the effectiveness of the 20/20 Catalysts Program, CanWEA honoured the program with its 2018 Group Leadership Award, which recognizes visionary leaders and clean energy pioneers for their outstanding contribution to the Canadian wind industry.

Canada’s wind energy industry has been involved with and benefited over 35 Indigenous communities in the country.

As the voice of the industry, the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) has been a supporter of Indigenous participation in Canadian wind projects. One of the ways that CanWEA has been active is by being a “Clean Energy Collaborator” with the innovative 20/20 Catalysts Program, which supports clean energy development in Indigenous communities.

Chantelle Cardinal, a Saddle Lake Band member from Whitefish Lake #128 and a Catalyst from the 2018 cohort, is one of the Catalysts with whom CanWEA has been working on convening Indigenous leaders at CanWEA events to enable meaningful discussions about the obstacles and opportunities for Indigenous involvement in wind energy projects in Alberta. She has been working with First Nations in Alberta for over 14 years and is currently the Director of Business Development & Environment for the G4 (Stoney Nakoda-Tsuut’ina Tribal Council).

Effective Indigenous and public engagement are cornerstones for successful wind energy development. CanWEA has developed Best Practices for Indigenous and Public Engagement to help industry members consult, engage and communicate on wind energy developments.

“Many of Alberta’s Indigenous communities are focused  on  opportunities  to participate in the clean energy development occurring in their Traditional Territory and to creating opportunity on Reserve and on Settlement lands,” Ms. Cardinal told CanWEA’s 2019 Spring Forum in Banff, Alberta. “Wind energy projects across Canada have demonstrated exemplary, mutually-beneficial partnerships with Indigenous peoples. From community involvement and investment, to contracts and long-term employment, these partnerships are blazing a new trail for how to facilitate collaborative Indigenous engagement and access this country’s vast renewable resources.”          

At the Spring Forum, she led an Indigenous panel discussion on the strengths, benefits and lessons from Indigenous participation in wind energy developments. A key point was that clean energy projects can contribute to energy and economic sovereignty  for Indigenous communities.

In recognition of its successes, CanWEA awarded the 20/20 Catalysts Program with its 2018 Group Leadership Award, which recognizes visionary leaders and clean energy pioneers for their outstanding contribution to the Canadian wind industry. (This story was written in 2019, prior to the creation of Canadian Renewable Energy Association).

Thanks to Todayville for helping us bring our members’ stories of collaboration and innovation to the public.

Click to read a foreward from JP Gladu, Chief Development and Relations Officer, Steel River Group; Former President and CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business.

JP Gladu, Chief Development and Relations Officer, Steel River Group; Former President & CEO, Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business

Click to read comments about this series from Jacob Irving, President of the Energy Council of Canada.

Jacob Irving, President of Energy Council of Canada

The Canadian Energy Compendium is an annual initiative by the Energy Council of Canada to provide an opportunity for cross-sectoral collaboration and discussion on current topics in Canada’s energy sector.  The 2020 Canadian Energy Compendium: Innovations in Energy Efficiency is due to be released November 2020.

 

Click below to read more stories from Energy Council of Canada’s Compendium series.

Read more on Todayville.

INDUSTRY-INDIGENOUS RELATIONS: A TREND TOWARD DEEPER ENGAGEMENT

ECONOMIC RECONCILIATION IS A PRIORITY AT ENBRIDGE

 

 

 

The Energy Council of Canada brings together a diverse body of members, including voices from all energy industries, associations, and levels of government within Canada. We foster dialogue, strategic thinking, collaboration, and action by bringing together senior energy executives from all industries in the public and private sectors to address national, continental, and international energy issues.

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What the latest Bank of Canada rate hike means for inflation, consumers

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By Tara Deschamps

The Bank of Canada hiked its key policy rate by half a percentage point to 4.25 per cent — the highest it’s been since January 2008 — on Wednesday in its final rate decision of a year that has been marked by stubbornly high inflation and rapidly increasing interest rates.

The bank, which has made a steady succession of large hikes over the course of the year, is widely believed to be nearing an end to the increases.

In announcing the rate hike Wednesday, the bank said it will consider whether the rate “needs to rise further to bring supply and demand back into balance and return inflation to target.”

Here’s a look at what the rate means, how analysts are interpreting it and what it could mean for consumers.

What is the key policy rate and what does it do?

The key policy rate, also known as the target for the overnight rate, is how much interest the Bank of Canada wants commercial banks to charge when lending each other money overnight to settle daily balances.

Knowing how much it costs to lend money, or deposit it with the central bank, helps set the interest rates charged on things like loans and mortgages.

Lowering the rate generally makes borrowing money more affordable, while raising it makes such activities more expensive.

Why is the bank using the rate to target inflation?

Inflation is a measure of how much prices of goods and services are rising or falling. High inflation is a sign of an economy that’s overheating.

Canada’s annual inflation rate reached a peak of 8.1 per cent in June, the highest level in four decades.

It has eased since then, reaching 6.9 per cent in September, but didn’t budge in October. And shoppers have seen higher prices for common expenses like groceries. Grocery prices have been rising at the fastest pace in decades and were 11 per cent higher in October than they were a year ago.

Economists and the central bank want to see a further easing, which is why interest rates have been rising so quickly in the hope of cooling consumer spending patterns.

“Inflation is still too high and short-term inflation expectations remain elevated,” the bank said in its announcement. “The longer that consumers and businesses expect inflation to be above the target, the greater the risk that elevated inflation becomes entrenched.”

What does this mean for my mortgage?

Mortgage rates tend to increase or decrease in tandem with interest rates.

When Canadians buy homes there are two kinds of mortgages they can select — fixed rate or variable. Fixed-rate mortgages allow borrowers to lock in the interest rate they will pay for a set amount of time, while variable-rate mortgages can fluctuate.

Allison Van Rooijen, vice-president of consumer credit at Meridian Credit Unit, estimates the rate hike Wednesday will bump payments on a $450,000 variable-rate mortgage on a 25-year amortization up another $130 or so every month. Since the beginning of 2022, rising rates have amounted to roughly $1,000 more per month since the beginning of 2022.

“Because of the high cost of housing in Canada and years of low borrowing rates, Canadians are carrying record-levels of debt on mortgages and lines of credit, so it’s really important that people go through their expenses and look to scale back discretionary spending where they can,” she said in an email.

She recommends people double down on efforts to pay off debt with higher interest rates as much as possible and if they are running into trouble making payments, discuss whether switching to another format of mortgage is right for them.

Does this mean interest rates will stop rising soon?

Shortly after the announcement, many economists predicted the bank isn’t done with hikes yet, even though the language in the statement signalled the possibility of holding steady at 4.25 per cent.

BMO Capital Markets chief economist Douglas Porter said a further hike of about 25 basis points is likely still to come because he’s concerned about the “stickiness of underlying inflation.”

James Orlando of TD Economics agreed. He expects the bank will deliver its final rate hike for the foreseeable future in January, bringing the measure to 4.5 per cent.

“We don’t think the Bank of Canada is done yet, but it is quickly approaching the end of its hiking cycle,” he wrote in a note to investors.

“As all Canadians know, the rapid rate hikes over 2022 have caused a dramatic adjustment in the real estate market, and we are starting to see this in consumer spending data. We expect this to continue to weigh on the economy over 2023 as the lagged effects of past hikes filter through.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 7, 2022.

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Experts raise concerns as Nigeria limits cash withdrawals

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By Chinedu Asadu in Abuja

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Experts on Wednesday raised concerns over a new policy announced by the Central Bank of Nigeria that heavily limits withdrawals of money in a push for a cashless economy.

The monetary policy, which applies to ATMs, banks and cash back from purchases, follows the launch of the West African nation’s newly designed currency notes to control the money supply.

The central bank limited weekly over-the-counter cash withdrawals to 100,000 naira ($225) for individuals and 500,000 naira ($1,124) for corporations, with a processing fee required to access more.

When the policy takes effect in Jan. 9, ATMs will no longer dispense Nigeria’s high denominations of 1,000 naira ($2.25) and 500 naira ($1.10) while withdrawals from ATMs and point-of-sale terminals also will be limited to 20,000 naira ($45) daily.

“In compelling circumstances, not exceeding once a month, where cash withdrawals above the prescribed limits are required for legitimate purposes, such cash withdrawals shall not exceed 5,000,000 naira ($11,236) and 10,000,000 naira ($22,471) for individuals and corporations, respectively,” said Haruna Mustafa, the bank’s director of banking supervision.

Policymakers say the withdrawal limits and recent monetary initiatives from the central bank would bring more people into the banking system and curb currency hoarding, illicit flows and inflation.

But analysts worry that with digital payments often unreliable in Nigeria, the initiative could hurt daily transactions that people and businesses make.

“The policy is intended to cause discomfort, to move you from cash to cashless because they (the central bank) have said they want to make it uncomfortable and expensive for you to hold cash,” economic analyst Kalu Aja said.

“That is a positive for the CBN (because) the more discomforting they are able to achieve, the more people can move,” Aja said.

In Nigeria, the majority of people work in the informal sector — mainly activities outside of the legal framework and government regulation such as farming, street and market trade, and public transport. The economy is heavily dependent on this sector, and cash is usually preferred for transactions because many lack bank accounts.

Only 45% of adults in Nigeria have accounts with regulated financial institutions, according to the World Bank. In the absence of bank accounts, point-of-sale terminals have emerged as one of the fastest-growing areas of financial inclusion in the country.

Through the withdrawal limits, the central bank is “directly attacking” such agency banking services and “people will essentially begin to hoard their money,” said Tunde Ajileye, a partner at Lagos–based SBM Intelligence firm.

“It is not going to drive people to start to try doing electronic transactions. On the contrary, it is going to move people away from the financial institutions,” he said.

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