The government of Canada has announced $3.5 million in funding to help two Nihtat Corporation projects cut diesel costs and reduce fossil fuel use in the North.

Of that, $3.3 million will allow three businesses in Inuvik and Iqaluit, and 32 residential units in Inuvik to develop enough combined solar power and battery storage to run almost exclusively on solar energy during spring and summer months. The businesses include Northmarts in Iqaluit and Inuvik and the Mackenzie Hotel in Inuvik.

The 1.25 megawatts of solar power is expected to cut diesel consumption in the communities by at least 380,000 liters per year, the government stated in a press release Tuesday.

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