Global New Energy Summit Discussed Solar Development on Tribal Lands

Carolyn Stewart, managing partner of Red Mountain Energy Partner, a tribal energy adviser, moderated a discussion between leaders in the energy industry and tribal leaders at the Global New Energy Summit in Colorado Springs, Colorado last week, reported The third annual summit attracted more than 400 leaders across the industry, finance, government and science.

The discussion centered on the vast natural resources concentrated on tribal lands and the challenges to develop them. Stewart explained the tax-related incentives for solar and wind development are irrelevant on tribal lands. But Stewart thinks new energy on tribal lands could be the answer to some tribes’ issues such as poverty and high unemployment.

Rob Thompson, shareholder and chair of the Indian Lands Group, noted that this is only feasible if infrastructure can carry energy from remote reservations to the main electrical grid.

Various tribal leaders also discussed their new energy projects. Bruce Valdez, executive director of the Southern Ute Indian Tribal Growth Fund, explained his tribe’s green energy development in the Four Corners region, including algae fuel cultivation and solar installations.

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