The Digital Technologies Supercluster announces a virtual clean energy training platform for First Nations communities


VANCOUVER, BC, November 30, 2021 / CNW / – In partnership with the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT), Siemens Canada and Denesoline Corporation (Łutsël K’é of the Dene First Nation wholly owned subsidiary), the Digital Technology Supercluster is proud to announce its investment in empowering Indigenous communities by offering an online professional training program on clean energy power plants.

British Columbia Institute of Technology logo (CNW Group / British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT))

Many rural communities in the North, such as Łutsël K’é Dene First Nation are diesel powered, which can harm both the environment and the health of residents. This project will work directly with Łutsël K’é Dene First Nation in the Northwest Territories to create a virtual platform for experiential training in clean energy power plants to build indigenous capacity to operate, maintain and maintain clean energy microgrid systems.

The virtual clean energy training platform for First Nations communities will develop a new virtual platform using BCIT’s experiential learning tools. Through this platform, learners can remotely access, navigate and control clean energy microgrid environments in real time, providing users with a hands-on experience without leaving their community.

“BCIT is honored to be a partner in this groundbreaking project that gives Indigenous communities vital training in the clean energy business and helps Canadian communities make the transition to greener fuels,” said Kathy kinloch, president of BCIT. “Realizing the work on our own important BCIT sustainability vision, this bold initiative connects education, industry and government to fuel economic recovery and resilience in our province.

This platform will train members of the Łutsël K’é Dene community in well-paying digital jobs, while accelerating the transition from diesel to renewable energy sources. Interns will learn the technologies and components involved in clean energy power plants, operating and management guidelines, and best practices in maintenance and troubleshooting.

“With the direction of from Canada Supercluster of digital technologies and the innovative thinking of the partners at the origin of this project, the Łutsël K’é Dene First Nation will bring essential infrastructure to their community while allowing Indigenous communities to create new opportunities in today’s digital economy, ”added the Honorable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry.

“It’s an investment in the people of Łutsël K’é Dene First Nation. We look forward to learning from this incredible partnership as we explore how best to leverage technology to benefit rural and remote Indigenous communities, ”said Sue Paish, CEO of the Digital Technologies Supercluster.

Łutsel K’e, or “place of the cisco fish,” is the only settlement on the eastern arm of Great Slave Lake, a site of the new Thaidene Nene National Park. This picturesque community of around 300 Dënesųłiné, or Chipewyan Dene, is only accessible by plane, boat or snowmobile.

This project is a total investment of $ 1.2 million with $ 700,000 invested by industry and $ 500,000 co-invested in the framework of the supercluster’s capacity building program. To learn more about this project, visit the Virtual Clean Energy Training Platform for First Nations Communities project page.


Dr. Hassan Farhangi, Director of BCIT, Smart Microgrid Applied Research Team

“The project team will train community members of the Łutsël K’é First Nation to virtually operate and maintain clean power plants. This project could also provide similar support to the 25 other indigenous communities and mining operations in the surrounding area that are relocating. diesel for the benefit of clean energy. “

Faisal Kazi, President and CEO, Siemens Canada

“Siemens Canada is proud to partner with BCIT and Łutsël K’é First Nation to help provide this virtual digital substation and facilitate an online learning environment. This platform enables students to learn about the latest IoT technologies and prepares them for a future in the clean energy economy. “

Haroon Bhatti, Innovation Manager, Denesoline Corporation

“As a business development branch of Łutsël K’é of the Dene First Nation (LKDFN), Denesoline Corporation, will help facilitate training for community members by providing students with a conference room, internet services, study supplies (laptop, pen, papers, books, etc.) and ‘other key areas of support. Denesoline Corporation aims to make Łutsël K’é Dene the model remote community for green energy and environmentally friendly practices. We will provide the stakeholders of this project with decisive and effective band council resolutions for community and infrastructure development on LKDFN ancestral lands. “

About the British Columbia Institute of Technology:

For more than 55 years, the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) has provided flexible, relevant and scalable training that prepares learners to deliver applied solutions to industry challenges – in British Columbia and around the world. With five campuses and approximately 45,000 students enrolled each year, BCIT is one of the largest post-secondary institutes in British Columbia. This project is led by BCIT’s Smart Microgrid Applied Research Team (SMART) which brings together the fields of information technology, electrical engineering, communications engineering and computer science to develop prototypes and solutions. to complex applied research problems. SMART conducts applied R&D in emerging and next-generation technologies and helps stimulate the BC computer industry through joint and collaborative research from industry, academia and government. Learn more at

About the Digital Technologies Supercluster:

A head start starts here. The Digital Supercluster is building a better Canada by growing Canadian businesses, creating a skilled digital workforce and positively impacting lives across the country. We are accelerating the development and adoption of digital technologies that keep Canadians healthy, fight climate change and boost economic productivity. Through a powerful combination of co-investment, cross-sector collaboration, intellectual property creation and digital talent development, we unleash the potential of Canadians to lead and succeed in the digital world. For more information visit:



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