Navajo Generating Station and
the Energy Future of the Colorado Plateau
Wednesday, Nov. 20, 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. Free.
Museum of Northern Arizona
Flagstaff AZ (November 8, 2013) – MNA is launching a series of forums that will explore the future of the Colorado Plateau’s forests, water resources, wildlife, climate, energy production and economy.
“We are experiencing the effects of rapid change in our region,” said Robert Breunig, President and CEO of MNA. “MNA has a responsibility to bring this information to the public so we can all work together to adapt to and plan for a very different future.”
The first topic in the forum focuses on energy. A recent agreement has been reached among a coalition of stakeholders on the future of the Navajo Generating Station (NGS), a 2,250 megawatt coal-fired power plant located on the Navajo Nation near Page, AZ – less than 20 miles from Grand Canyon National Park.
The agreement has been accepted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as supplemental to its proposed rulemaking for NGS. Public comment is being accepted by the EPA until January 6, 2014.
In February the EPA issued a proposal to reduce the visibility impacts of NGS on eleven national parks and wilderness areas by 73 percent. The agreement also calls for significant near-term pollution reductions from the plant, for the Department of the Interior to reduce its own carbon footprint and invest in renewable energy development on tribal lands, and for the Department of Energy to develop a path to a renewable energy future for the region.
This agreement was the culmination of more than two years of meetings facilitated by retired NAU environmental engineering professor William Auberle, who will host the forum.
If adopted by the EPA after a period of public comment, the agreement will lead the way for resource decisions with major impacts on the electricity, water, natural resources and climate future of the American Southwest.
It would create both economic opportunities and challenges for people from Wyoming to Mexico, from Colorado to the Pacific, including many Native American tribes. “It is not an agreement without controversy, and the forum will provide an opportunity to explore diverse perspectives,” noted Robert Breunig.
The evening will feature a panel that includes several of the agreement’s principal negotiators. Serving on the panel will be:
- William Auberle, Senior Consulting Engineer, Pinyon Envirnomental
- Letty Belin, Counselor to the Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of the Interior
- David Palumbo, Assistant Regional Director, Lower Colorado Region, Bureau of Reclamation
- Stephen Etsitty, Executive Director, EPA, Navajo Nation
- Vickie Patton, General Counsel and Clean Air Program Manager, Environmental Defense Fund
- Kelly Barr, Senior Director of Environmental Management, Salt River Project
The Museum of Northern Arizona celebrates its 85th year of inspiring a sense of love and responsibility for the Colorado Plateau through collecting, studying, interpreting, and preserving the region’s natural and cultural heritage.
The Museum of Northern Arizona is at 3101 N. Fort Valley Road in Flagstaff, Arizona. For information, go to musnaz.org or call 928.774.5213.