Navajo and Hopi Tribes unite to keep NGS open

Navajo Generating Station sits a few miles south of Page, Arizona. Adobe stock

Navajo Generating Station sits a few miles south of Page, Arizona. Adobe stock

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. — On July 12, leaders of the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe reaffirmed their support for the continuation of the Navajo Generating Station for the benefit of the Navajo and Hopi people.

The current two-year agreement allows for NGS to continue operating until the end of 2019.

The Navajo Nation has selected a potential new owner and new operator that would allow for the continuation of the Navajo Generating Station beyond 2019. Negotiations with Avenue Capital as the new potential owner and Middle River Power (MRP) as the new potential operator have begun. 

“We look forward to the negotiations that need to take place and the continued collaboration with NGS owners in ensuring the transfer of assets,” said Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye “This selection is a preliminary stage of the process. No contracts have been signed. MRP has been given the opportunity to move forward in becoming the new owner of NGS. We will do everything we can to make sure this is a successful partnership.”

Navajo and Hopi leaders agree there is much at stake in the negotiations, including hundreds of high skilled jobs and a significant source of revenues that provide direct services to Navajo and Hopi people. 

“The Hopi Tribe remains hopeful that these negotiations will be successful for the economic benefit of the Hopi and Navajo People,” said Hopi Tribal Chairman Timothy L. Nuvangyaoma.

“The economic security of the Hopi Tribe is not merely about money, it’s about stewardship — protecting the future and welfare of all who live in our communities,” said Hopi Tribal Vice Chairman Clark W. Tenakhongva.

Begaye and Nuvangyaoma said continuing NGS operations will ensure continued payment of royalties to both the Navajo Nation and the Hopi Tribe, and secure many jobs for workers at Navajo Generating Station and the Kayenta Mine. 

In regards to the ongoing discussions, Navajo Nation Council Speaker LoRenzo Bates said he looks forward to the successful negotiation of new ownership and continued operations of the Navajo Generating Station and the Kayenta Mine.  

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