BIA announces Energy and Mineral Development Grants

Calista Corporation and Toksook Bay’s Nunakauiak Yupik Corporation named grantees.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) announced today (July 1st, 2021) that it has awarded more than $6.5 million in Energy and Mineral Development Program (EMDP) grants to 27 federally recognized tribes and seven Alaska Native corporations in 15 states.

Included as award grantees are the Calista Corporation and the Nunakauiak Yupik Corporation of Toksook Bay.

The funding will aid their efforts to identify, study, design and/or develop projects using energy, mineral and natural resources, which, in turn, will help them achieve economic self-sufficiency by developing and controlling their own energy production capabilities.

“Having direct access to a reliable energy source is often taken for granted in the United States, but due to their remote locations, it can be a real challenge for American Indian and Alaska Native communities to achieve that standard,” said Principal Deputy Assistance Secretary – Indian Affairs Bryan T. Newland. “The BIA’s Energy and Mineral Development Program grants seek to close this gap by supporting efforts to develop tribally and Alaska Native corporation-owned energy resources to benefit tribal members and ANC shareholders while contributing to Indian Country’s economic progress.”

The Calista Corporation is awarded $721,510.00 for a port site development, a nominally 4-mile port access road, a 1-mile quarry access road, and development of a quarry at the identified mineral source. The Pilcher Quarry project consists of design and construction of infrastructure necessary to allow rock extraction from a proposed quarry located on Pilcher Mountain in Marshall, Alaska.

The Nunakauiak Yupik Corporation of Toksook Bay, Alaska is awarded $57,350.00 to provide sufficient examination of solid minerals and aggregate with feasibility and economic studies to promote the use and development of energy and mineral resources on tribal lands.

The Bureau’s EMDP grants help eligible applicants obtain technical assistance funding to hire consultants to identify, evaluate or assess the market for energy or mineral resources that a tribe will process, use, or develop. The grants provide funding that allow the tribe to conduct resource inventories and assessments, feasibility studies, or other pre-development studies necessary to process, use and develop energy and mineral resources.

The BIA Office of Trust Services’ Division of Energy and Mineral Development (DEMD) assists tribal governments and American Indian Allottees with evaluating energy and mineral resource potential on their lands. Recipients use this information to determine whether or not they wish to develop energy projects, or extract and market commercially, or strategically, valuable minerals.

DEMD solicits proposals on an annual basis from tribes and through a competitive review process, then selects qualified projects for funding. The program’s grant amounts are dependent upon annual congressional appropriations. The projects announced today were selected from among 53 proposals submitted during the FY 2020 funding cycle.