The case to keep the Navajo Generating Station open will be put forward this week by lawmakers during a hearing held by the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources, which will set out the benefits of the 2,250 mega-watt plant.
Towards the end of last year, it was announced that the largest coal power plant in the US, which had planned to close in 2017, would remain open until 2019 following an environmental review carried out by the federal Bureau of Reclamation and Bureau of Indian Affairs. However, the decommissioning can be prevented by a new buyer or governmental intervention.
The campaign to keep the plant open has been spearheaded by Peabody Energy and the Navajo Nation, along with the backing of industry groups, such as National Mining Association and American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity.
Peabody own the Kayenta mine – NGS’ sole fuel supplier – and has funded a number of reports that highlight the competitiveness of the plant.
US Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has also joined the coalition working to promote the Navajo Generating Station (NGS) as a vital resource and supply of power to the West.
More than 800 people combined work at the plant and mine and yield over 22% of Navajo Nation’s annual revenue, which equates, as well as more than 85% of the that for neighbouring Hopi Tribe.