Innovation Update: Henry Red Cloud

Starting today, we will be updating you on the progress of one of our 2009 innovators each week. This week's update comes from Henry Red Cloud, whose innovation seeks to bring resources and education about renewable energy to Native American communities in the Dakotas. This update and those that follow will also be included on the brand-new profile pages, which will be launched one week from today on July 7. Check back next Wednesday as we bring you the latest on More in the Middle, Diane Bell McKoy's innovation.

Since the Prosperity Now Innovation Summit in October 2009, Henry's Lakota Solar Enterprises (LSE) and Denver-based nonprofit Trees, Water & People have continued to coordinate and administer trainings for tribal members on solar-heating technology at the Red Cloud Renewable Energy Center (RCREC) on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Most recently, ten members of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe in South Dakota were certified as Solar Technicians. In May 2010, one of these training sessions was featured in a photo journal exhibit in Denver Holding Mother Earth Sacred, by Earl Dotter and Cindy Becnel.

LSE has also produced an additional 200 solar heating systems, including 178 for the Cheyenne River Reservation, that are now being installed for families by the newly trained Solar Technicians. We have made numerous improvements to our facilities: a new cement floor in LSE's manufacturing facility, radiant hot water heating system, and new well and plumbing fixtures in our residential area. A SkyStream 3.7 wind turbine has been installed and is providing part of RCREC's electricity. In July, an interactive workshop on residential-scale wind turbines will be held at RCREC using the new SkyStream as a training tool.

In April 2010, LSE cosponsored Renewables on Tribal Homelands, a conference held on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota. The over 170 registrants included representatives of the Oglala Sioux, Spirit Lake, Potawatomi Nation, Ponca, Ute Mountain, Sac & Fox, and Red Lake Tribes, as well as many local Rosebud members. In June 2010, Henry presented workshops and demonstrations of solar heater installations in Oklahoma for members of the Pawnee and Citizen Potawatomi Nations.

A flyer and description of the photo journal is available here. The work of LSE and Trees, Water & People was also recently highlighted on the Environmental Defense Fund's Clean Energy Pioneers website.

Henry is also putting together a sesson at the 2010 Assets Learning Conference. Learn more about renewables and Native communities by registering today!

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