Everybody Solar Installs Battery Backup for Pine Ridge Indian Reservation Meat Processing Plant

One Spirit, a global nonprofit collective of Oglala Lakota Indians and volunteers, with the help of Everybody Solar, a nonprofit dedicated to providing solar energy to other nonprofits , unveiled a solar battery backup for the meat processing plant, the Charging Buffalo House, on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

In 2019, Everybody Solar brought an 11.6 kW solar power system to the Charging Buffalo House. The network was installed to help increase the sustainability of the reserve’s first meat processing plant. Prior to the site’s commissioning, meat was processed out of state rather than on the reservation, resulting in high costs and no guarantee of traditional Lakota treatment by processors. Indeed, last year, during COVID-19 travel restrictions, for months the facility was the only source of fresh meat for most families on the reservation.

“I’m really happy with our solar system’s battery backup,” said Bamm Brewer, manager of Charging Buffalo House. “It will help protect our meat during critical summer power outages, keeping our people healthy. I really think our ancestors would be proud.

Donors for the solar panel include individual donors, Tribal Funding, RELiON Batteries, Citizen and Business Performance Improvement.

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Nohemi M. Moore