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Indian Affairs Approves First Ever Tribal Energy Development Organization

For Immediate Release:
March 16, 2022

Action aids in restoring Tribal nation’s sovereignty over energy development on its lands

WASHINGTON – The Department of the Interior’s Office for the Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs announced today that it has approved the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians’ application to create its Tribal Energy Development Organization. The action makes the Minnesota Tribe the first to receive such approval and will support their ongoing effort to develop renewable energy resources.

“The Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians is reclaiming its sovereign authority to control the development of energy resources,” said Assistant Secretary-Indian Affairs Bryan Newland. “This is an exciting development that will lead to greater energy security for their people’s comfort and prosperity.”

A Tribal Energy Development Organization is a business organization in which the Tribe owns majority interest. TEDOs are an alternative to Tribal Energy Resource Agreements, both of which allow a Tribe to enter into and manage energy-related leases, rights-of-way, and business agreements without obtaining Secretarial approval for each individual lease, right-of-way, or agreement.

The approval and certification of Red Lake’s TEDO will allow Red Lake to forgo Secretarial review when it enters into a lease or business agreement with the TEDO and when it enters into rights-of-way with the TEDO.

The Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians in Minnesota submitted a request for certification of a Tribal Energy Development Organization on December 17, 2021. Through its application, Red Lake requested that Twenty-First Century Tribal Energy, Inc be approved and certified as a TEDO.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs is headed by a director who is responsible for managing day-to-day operations through four offices – Indian Services, Justice Services, Trust Services, and Field Operations. These offices directly administer or fund tribally based infrastructure, law enforcement, social services, tribal governance, natural and energy resources, and trust land and resources management programs for the nation’s federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native tribes. The Bureau’s Indian Energy Service Center in the Office of Trust Services administers the regulations addressing TEDOs and TERAs.

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