LLBO recognized for their use of solar

The Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe was recently recognized by the Clean Energy Resource Teams, or CERTs, for their implementation of solar power across the reservation.

According to Environmental Deputy Director of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, Brandy Toft, the Band has been installing solar heating units in low-income homes since 2008, and in 2015 installed a community solar garden across five sites to benefit low-income residents.

Toft says the project eased the financial burdens of 100 Leech Lake families on energy assistance, with a yearly average of $22,000 worth of electricity produced.

The Band is working on an overall Sustainability Strategic Plan, with some funding coming from CERTs, with the goal of solar readiness for new construction and major renovations, approaching net zero energy and overall sustainability for those types of projects, and support infrastructure for electric vehicles.

Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers events and issues in north central Minnesota, which include local government, crime, courts, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University and received her degree in 2018. Larissa, native to the great state of New York, grew up in Bemidji, and enjoys spending her spare time with her family and pet cat. She also loves Star Trek, punk rock music and the theater.

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