Jan 16, 2024
The Malahat First Nation, along with investors, is just six weeks away from breaking ground on a 100,000-square-foot facility meant to build energy storage batteries.
Located in the 52-acre business park on the Malahat reserve, the project is a partnership between the First Nation and the publicly traded company known as Energy Plug.
The Nation will hold 51 per cent ownership of the project.
Broderick Gunning, Energy Plug’s president and CEO, explains what exactly will be assembled inside the plant.
“We are bringing in (battery) cells, so there’s two types of cells. There is cylindrical and there is blade, and basically those cells are going to be coming over here, and we will be assembling those into packs,” said Gunning.
“These packs are anywhere from 5 kW up to 100 kW, and then those packs will be deployed in different applications.”
Some of those applications will include home batteries and energy storage for large-scale solar and wind projects.
Tristan Gale, director of economic development for the Nation, tells CHEK News they’re trying to be proactive towards energy sovereignty.
“This battery plant is a perfect example of Malahat creating an opportunity to take that sovereignty and control distribution of power across Malahat’s land,” added Gale.
“The Nation knows we are going to exceed the amount of power that’s available through BC Hydro, and Malahat wants to make sure that we are doing this in a sustainable way.”
Once completed, it’s expected to create more than 100 local jobs starting sometime in 2025.