BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative


About the BCICEI

The New Relationship Trust will implement the British Columbia Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI) to provide support and capacity-building funds to Indigenous communities working on the development of clean energy projects.

Funded through the Federal Government’s Strategic Partnerships Initiative (SPI) and the Province of BC’s CleanBC plan, the BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI) supports the following objectives:

  • Developing local clean energy and energy efficiency projects in Indigenous communities;
  • Building Indigenous capacity;
  • Creating benefits including ownership, revenue sharing, business development, and local employment; and
  • Identifying pathfinding opportunities for further funding and partnerships on clean energy.

BCICEI funding will enable the implementation of cost-effective clean energy and efficiency projects through support for feasibility and site selection activities; environmental review and permitting; project design and engineering; and demand side management. The initiative will also target remote and off-grid communities seeking to reduce dependency on conventional diesel power generation.

The BCICEI is delivered in partnership with Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) and the Province of British Columbia. The three-year funding for BCICEI was established through the Strategic Partnerships Initiative (SPI) in 2016 but joined by the province of BC in 2019. The BCICEI is informed through recommendations and advice from the BCICEI Advisory Committee, made up of representatives from federal and provincial government, Indigenous leaders, and private sector stakeholders.


BCICEI Funding


2021 Funding Priorities

Demand for BCICEI funds is high, therefore priority will go to project applications that:

  • Demonstrate readiness and viability through completed feasibility studies / plans, assessments, agreements  and/or community partnerships;
  • Create opportunities for communities to increase self-sufficiency, potentially generate revenue and build capacity with clean energy or energy efficiency project development including pilot projects; and/or
  • Support clean energy developments in remote, off-grid, diesel dependent or (end of line) communities.

Project Funding Categories

Eligible BCICEI projects could receive support through contributions up to $500,000 in assisted project costs; project support levels will be determined based on demand for funds, the strength of applications, and project development categories.

Categories of project development phases under BCICEI include:

Feasibility and Site Selection 

Activities conducted to assess the project in detail, such that a decision can be made on proceeding with the project. Feasibility and site selection activities include: hydrologic assessment, wind monitoring, resource assessments, archaeological overview assessment, preliminary designs, business plans, detailed cost estimates, etc.

Demand Side Management

Conservation and efficiency activities designed to manage demand for energy. Examples of such activities include: energy performance modeling to establish a path for compliance with environmental building codes or standards, studies related to the design of energy efficient building systems or models, etc.

Project Design and Engineering

Project design and engineering activities for this stage include: issuing tender documents for the purpose of selecting contractors, negotiating and establishing contracts, as well as interconnection studies, electricity project management, legal agreements, financing fees, pre-construction activities, financial modeling, etc.

Clean Energy (small scale installation/non-utility scale) 

Installation of small scale clean energy projects or small scale community-owned energy generation to power the First Nation community in whole or in part that could include biomass, biogas, geothermal, hydro, solar, wind or ocean power. Small scale would include projects to provide power for community buildings or 100kw or less; small scale would include projects that make the community grid independent (or less grid dependent).

Environmental Review and Permitting

Development activities for this stage include: costs for such items as applying for and obtaining permits and approvals (including those necessary to create a Development Plan as required by the BC government), land surveys and land rights, etc.

Pre-Construction/Pre-Commercial Operating Date (COD) 

Projects that have an existing energy purchase agreement, or impact benefit agreement, that are expected to generate significant revenue and jobs for its community. Both capital and non-capital costs that will assist the execution of the agreement are considered eligible.



  • Indigenous Communities, including self-governing First Nations;
  • Tribal Councils, or groups of two or more First Nations;
  • Indigenous for profit and not-for-profit corporations, partnerships, associations, cooperatives and institutions, which are majority owned and controlled by Indigenous communities.

BCICEI Application Process

Application process for 2021-22 is now closed.

Read the BCICEI Application Guidelines, which also contains our Frequently Asked Questions on page 12.


Complete all fields of the BCICEI Application Form (electronically or manually) BCICEI Application Form (word) or BCICEI Application Form (PDF).

If submitting electronically, save the completed BCICEI Application with the following filename format: ApplicantName_BCICEI_ddmmyy.doc


Prepare supporting documentation to submit with the BCICEI Application as a complete application package (see sections 4 and 5.2 of the BCICEI Application Guidelines)


Email or mail (fax submissions not accepted) the completed BCICEI Application Form and all necessary supporting documentation to the New Relationship Trust. . To ensure your submission will be considered, do not submit individually or in pieces.

By Email:
[email protected]
Email Subject (example):
‘XYZ First Nation, email 1 of 4’


New Relationship Trust

Attention: Sarah Powell & Selina Beltran

3188 Alder Court

North Vancouver, BC

V7H 2V6


Seeking Program Evaluation for BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative

The purpose of this request for proposals (RFP) is to select an evaluation consultant to evaluate the clean energy projects of the BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI) and how the projects have aligned to the intent of the initiative. A previous program evaluation was conducted in 2020 that focused on the BCICEI program goals and objectives.

The evaluation consultant shall help to inform the work of BCICEI as we evaluate the previous 5 years of funding and highlight project accomplishments of the program through the years.

The RFP provides background, criteria for consultant selection, the scope of work, key questions, roles and responsibilities, contents of the proposal, and budget.

You will find the RFP by clicking the red button below.

The application process for 2021-2022 is now closed.


Sarah Powell & Selina Beltran
BC Indigenous Clean Energy Initiative (BCICEI)
New Relationship Trust

Tel: 604.925.3338
Toll-Free: 1.877.922.3338
Emails: [email protected]   &   [email protected]



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