"Peabody Energy said today it has found a number of potential buyers interested in operating the Navajo Generating Station, keeping alive hopes that the massive Arizona coal plant will continue running beyond its planned 2019 closing date. The St. Louis-based mining firm did not disclose the list of buyers or the number of parties interested in operating NGS, as the facility is often called.
But in a sign of the simmering tensions surrounding one of the West's largest coal facilities, the plant's operator said it will continue planning for its closure even as it provides information to perspective buyers.
The Trump administration has staked much on the plant's future, with Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke labeling its continued operation a "top priority" (Climatewire, June 28). Washington's efforts have been cheered on by the Navajo and Hopi tribes, whose economies are intertwined with the plant, and Peabody Energy Corp., which operates a mine that serves the facility."