| July 26
July 26 Salt River Project said Friday the
owners of the 2,250-megawatt Navajo coal-fired plant in Arizona
agreed to shut one unit by 2020 and install emissions control
equipment on the other two units.
Salt River Project, the public electric and water utility
that operates the plant, said in a release that the owners will
install selective catalytic reduction equipment to reduce
nitrogen oxide (NOX) emissions on the remaining two units by
The agreement depends on the exit of two of Navajo's current
owners, Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (LADWP) and NV
Energy Inc, as expected by 2019, and the Navajo Nation
not exercising an option to purchase a portion of the plant.
Together, LADWP and NV Energy own the equivalent of almost
one unit at Navajo.
If the ownership situation plays out differently, Salt River
said the agreement announced Friday would require NOX reductions
equivalent to the shutdown of one unit between 2020 and 2030.
Under both scenarios, Salt River said the current owners are
committed to cease operation of all coal-fired generation at
Navajo no later than Dec. 22, 2044.
The Navajo plant is located on the Navajo Nation, less than
20 miles from the Grand Canyon near Page, Arizona. The plant is
owned by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Pinnacle West Capital
Corp's Arizona Public Service, LADWP, UniSource Energy
Corp's Tucson Electric Power and NV Energy.
There are three 750-MW coal-fired units at Navajo, which
entered service in 1974, 1975 and 1976.
In addition, Salt River said the U.S. Department of
Interior, agreed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and study
opportunities to transition the federal share of Navajo over
The groups in the agreement include the Central Arizona
Water Conservation District, the Environmental Defense Fund, the
Gila River Indian Community, the Navajo Nation, Salt River
Project, the U.S. Department of the Interior and Western
Salt River said the groups would submit the agreement to the
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for approval.
Salt River did not say how much the agreement would cost but
in January warned an EPA proposal could cost up to $1.1 billion.
In February, the EPA gave the Navajo owners a couple of
options to reduce NOX emissions.
The EPA said the owners could install selective catalytic
reduction equipment on all three of the units by 2018; install
the equipment on one unit per year between 2021 and 2023; or
come up with their own plan that would reduce emissions by the
same amount or more than the EPA's proposal.
Salt River said the agreement Friday would reduce more
emissions than the EPA's proposal.
Nitrogen oxides react with other chemicals in the atmosphere
to form ozone, which causes a white or brown haze in the air
that has been associated with asthma and other breathing
disorders, the EPA said.