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Title: Fossil Energy Planning for Navajo Nation

Abstract

This project includes fossil energy transition planning to find optimal solutions that benefit the Navajo Nation and stakeholders. The majority of the tribe’s budget currently comes from fossil energy-revenue. The purpose of this work is to assess potential alternative energy resources including solar photovoltaics and biomass (microalgae for either biofuel or food consumption). This includes evaluating carbon-based reserves related to the tribe’s resources including CO 2 emissions for the Four Corners generating station. The methodology for this analysis will consist of data collection from publicly available data, utilizing expertise from national laboratories and academics, and evaluating economic, health, and environmental impacts. Finally, this report will highlight areas of opportunities to implement renewable energy in the Navajo Nation by presenting the technology requirements, cost, and considerations to energy, water, and environment in an educational structure.

Authors:
 [1]
  1. Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1389987
Report Number(s):
LLNL-TR-736997
DOE Contract Number:
AC52-07NA27344
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
20 FOSSIL-FUELED POWER PLANTS

Citation Formats

Acedo, Margarita. Fossil Energy Planning for Navajo Nation. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.2172/1389987.
Acedo, Margarita. Fossil Energy Planning for Navajo Nation. United States. doi:10.2172/1389987.
Acedo, Margarita. 2017. "Fossil Energy Planning for Navajo Nation". United States. doi:10.2172/1389987. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1389987.
@article{osti_1389987,
title = {Fossil Energy Planning for Navajo Nation},
author = {Acedo, Margarita},
abstractNote = {This project includes fossil energy transition planning to find optimal solutions that benefit the Navajo Nation and stakeholders. The majority of the tribe’s budget currently comes from fossil energy-revenue. The purpose of this work is to assess potential alternative energy resources including solar photovoltaics and biomass (microalgae for either biofuel or food consumption). This includes evaluating carbon-based reserves related to the tribe’s resources including CO2 emissions for the Four Corners generating station. The methodology for this analysis will consist of data collection from publicly available data, utilizing expertise from national laboratories and academics, and evaluating economic, health, and environmental impacts. Finally, this report will highlight areas of opportunities to implement renewable energy in the Navajo Nation by presenting the technology requirements, cost, and considerations to energy, water, and environment in an educational structure.},
doi = {10.2172/1389987},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = 2017,
month = 8
}

Technical Report:

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  • The project, A Feasibility Study to Evaluate Wind Energy Potential on the Navajo Nation, is funded under a solicitation issued by the U.S. Department of Energy Tribal Energy Program. Funding provided by the grant allowed the Navajo Nation to measure wind potential at two sites, one located within the boundaries of the Navajo Nation and the other off-reservation during the project period (September 5, 2005 - September 30, 2009). The recipient for the grant award is the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA). The grant allowed the Navajo Nation and NTUA manage the wind feasibility from initial site selection through themore » decision-making process to commit to a site for wind generation development. The grant activities help to develop human capacity at NTUA and help NTUA to engage in renewable energy generation activities, including not only wind but also solar and biomass. The final report also includes information about development activities regarding the sited included in the grant-funded feasibility study.« less
  • The Navajo Nation is the home of the largest land-based Indian reservation in the U.S., covering more than twenty-seven thousand square miles. The land in the southwestern U.S. holds an abundance of natural resources, which are intimately integrated in the history, economy, and growth of the Navajo tribe. This report aims to wholly visualize the Navajo Nation’s resources and energy and water consumption using quantitative data and systems engineering analysis. The energy and water flow chart visualizations provide structured information for tribal leaders, policymakers, and educators around energy and water system discussions, technology development opportunities, and policy decisions. The analysismore » of both energy and water is a first step to visualizing the interconnectedness and complexities of the energy-water-food nexus of the nation. The goal of this energy analysis was to first estimate coal resource consumption because of the considerable impact coal has on the Navajo economy, recently as much as $26 million per year in coal royalties.« less
  • The assets that Citizen Potawatomi Nation holds were evaluated to help define the strengths and weaknesses to be used in pursuing economic prosperity. With this baseline assessment, a Planning Team will create a vision for the tribe to integrate into long-term energy and business strategies. Identification of energy efficiency devices, systems and technologies was made, and an estimation of cost benefits of the more promising ideas is submitted for possible inclusion into the final energy plan. Multiple energy resources and sources were identified and their attributes were assessed to determine the appropriateness of each. Methods of saving energy were evaluatedmore » and reported on and potential revenue-generating sources that specifically fit the tribe were identified and reported. A primary goal is to create long-term energy strategies to explore development of tribal utility options and analyze renewable energy and energy efficiency options. Associated goals are to consider exploring energy efficiency and renewable economic development projects involving the following topics: (1) Home-scale projects may include construction of a home with energy efficiency or renewable energy features and retrofitting an existing home to add energy efficiency or renewable energy features. (2) Community-scale projects may include medium to large scale energy efficiency building construction, retrofit project, or installation of community renewable energy systems. (3) Small business development may include the creation of a tribal enterprise that would manufacture and distribute solar and wind powered equipment for ranches and farms or create a contracting business to include energy efficiency and renewable retrofits such as geothermal heat pumps. (4) Commercial-scale energy projects may include at a larger scale, the formation of a tribal utility formed to sell power to the commercial grid, or to transmit and distribute power throughout the tribal community, or hydrogen production, and propane and natural-gas distribution systems.« less
  • Final report for the First Steps Toward Developing Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency on Tribal Lands grants.
  • The Navajo reservation located in portions of Arizona, New Mexico and Utah is rich in low sulfur coal deposits, ideal for strip mining operation. The Navajo Nation has been leasing the mineral resources to non-Indian enterprises for purposes of extraction. Since the early 1950s the Navajo Nation has entered into extensive coal leases with several large companies and utilities. Contracts have committed huge quantities of Navajo coal for mining. This research was directed to evaluate the shadow prices of Navajo coal and identify optimal coal extraction. An economic model of coal resource extraction over time was structured within an optimalmore » control theory framework. The control problem was formulated as a discrete dynamic optimization problem. A comparison of the shadow prices of coal deposits derived from the dynamic model with the royalty payments the tribe receives on the basis of the present long-term lease contracts indicates that, in most cases, the tribe is paid considerably less than the amount of royalty projected by the model. Part of these discrepancies may be explained in terms of the low coal demand condition at the time of leasing and due to greater uncertainties with respect to the geologic information and other risks associated with mining operations. However, changes in the demand for coal with rigidly fixed terms of royalty rates will lead to non-optimal extraction of coal. A corrective tax scheme is suggested on the basis of the results of this research. The proposed tax per unit of coal shipped from a site is the difference between the shadow price and the present royalty rate. The estimated tax rates over time are derived.« less