Tribal Pollution Prevention


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We continue our Year of Renewables by highlighting Wind in October's call. Indian Country offers some of the most lucrative sites for wind energy in America. We heard from 3 communities:

Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska - Carolyn Stewart (Red Mountain Energy Partners) discussed their experience with wind power generation on Winnebago Tribal Lands in northeastern Nebraska.
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Rosebud Sioux Tribe – Ken Haukaas (Economic Development Advisor) discussed how the Rosebud Sioux Tribe in South Dakota is moving from a functional, single 750Kw wind turbine to a larger scale 30MW commercial wind energy generation facility. Photo: On the afternoon of February 27, 2003, the first utility-scale wind turbine was installed on the Rosebud Sioux Indian Reservation. In one of the final steps of the construction process, the three 77-foot blades were attached to the 750 kW NEG MICON turbine, which stands at 190 ft at the hub. The turbine site is located northwest of the Rosebud Casino and Hotel complex, and is interconnected to the grid through the casino. Contact Ken at
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Intertribal COUP (Council on Utility Policy) – Pat Spears (President of COUP) discussed the importance of tribal communities working together to increase their renewable energy capabilities. Contact Pat at
View the presentation (large file)

Additional wind resources

  • Listen to this (audio file)…Tribal Lands Struggle To Bring Clean Power Online – National Public Radio story on the Campo Kumeyaay Nation's wind energy projects and the challenges faced by tribes as they pursue renewable energy. Copyright 2010 NPR, 8/20/10.
  • Intertribal Council On Utility Policy: Intertribal COUP was formed in 1994 to provide a forum for utility issues discussion from regulatory and economic perspectives. 2010 marks the sixteenth year of Intertribal COUP's work toward bringing GigaWatts of clean energy online by building utility-scale renewable power installations on tribal lands. They provide policy analysis and recommendations, as well as workshops of telecommunications, climate change research, Western Area Power Administration hydropower allocations, energy efficiency, energy planning, and renewable energy, with a heavy emphasis on wind energy development.
  • US Department of Energy recently announced $5million to support wind energy development, including improvements in short-term wind forecasting.
  • National Renewable Energy Laboratory: Tribal Project Assistance — NREL helps tribes develop and implement sustainable energy strategies with technical expertise and capabilities that support renewable energy technology deployment projects across the continental United States and Alaska.recently announced $5million to support wind energy development, including improvements in short-term wind forecasting.
  • The U.S. Department of Energy's Tribal Energy Program has created a Web site and Guide to assist tribal communities in developing energy resources. The Guide to Tribal Energy Development includes steps to determine the feasibility of your project and all the related issues — the environment, economics, risk factors, legal issues, financing, etc. The site includes many of the forms and documents your tribe may need when developing energy resources on your tribal lands. For specific wind resources visit:
  • Northwest Sustainable Energy for Economic Development (NW SEED) has published a guidebook, Energy Planning: A Guide for NW Indian Tribes, which was designed as a tool to help Native American Tribes develop a plan to achieve energy independence. The guide contains information and resources to help select and implement projects to conserve energy, generate clean, renewable energy, construct efficient and environmentally friendly buildings and other energy related community or business projects — all tailored to the geography of the Northwest and the people of its Tribes.