The utilities that own the Navajo Generating Station coal-fired power plant near Page are tired of overpaying for power and decided Monday to close the plant when their lease expires at the end of 2019.
To run that long, the utility owners need to work out an arrangement with the Navajo Nation, which owns the land, to decommission the plant after the lease expires. Otherwise, the owners will have to close at the end of this year to have time to tear down the plant's three generators and be gone by 2020.
The closure will affect not only about 430 workers at the plant but also another 325 at Peabody's Kayenta Mine 80 miles away, which straddles the Navajo and Hopi reservations and has nowhere else to sell its coal, especially with the fuel falling out of favor nationally.
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