The largest coal plant in the West prepares to close

Source: Wikimedia

The last coal train from the Kayenta mine rolled to the doomed Navajo Generating Station this week, kicking off a countdown for the closure of the West’s largest coal-fired power plant.

A coalition of utilities that own the plant said in 2017 it would cease operations due to increased economic pressure, and the Navajo Nation ended its efforts to buy the plant earlier this year.

The plant and coal mine provide over 800 jobs to primarily Navaho and Hopi workers as well as tribal royalties, and layoffs are set to begin this month at the coal mine.

Discussion of the plant’s future has proved a flashpoint for national and regional energy policy and raised larger questions on how Native communities will handle ties to fossil fuel industries as the economy changes.

More at Earther.

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