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Deadline Approaches for Interested Buyers of Navajo Generating Station

Janice and Nolan Braud/Alamy/High Country News

Sunday is the deadline for potential buyers of the Navajo Generating Station to show interest in the plant. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports, without new ownership NGS will close at the end of 2019.

According to NGS’s current owners, more than a dozen nondisclosure agreements have been signed by groups interested in the coal-fired plant. Prospective buyers have received information on the economics, maintenance costs, and other details of NGS.

Scott Harelson is a spokesman for the Salt River Project, one of the plant’s current owners.

"We do have indications of interest in potential ownership in the future, but to what level that interest is, we don’t have that detail … We are more than willing to work with any other entity that wants to pursue potential ownership of the plant," says Harelson.

Harelson says NGS owners have begun to forgo long-term maintenance. They voted earlier this year to close the plant, as power sources like natural gas have become more economical.

If a sale isn’t finalized in the coming months, NGS will be decommissioned after December 2019. The plant’s closure threatens nearly 800 jobs and significant revenue for the Navajo Nation and Hopi Tribe.

Ryan Heinsius joined the KNAU newsroom as executive producer in 2013 and was named news director and managing editor in 2024. As a reporter, he has covered a broad range of stories from local, state and tribal politics to education, economy, energy and public lands issues, and frequently interviews internationally known and regional musicians. Ryan is an Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Public Media Journalists Association Award winner, and a frequent contributor to NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered and national newscast.
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