Solar Energy at Kayenta

Kayenta Solar Facility
Photo: Drake Dunaway

Having worked in the electric and natural gas utility business for over 45 years, Glenn Steiger is currently focused on expanding renewable energy throughout Arizona.

Steiger is the executive consultant for the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority. He immerses himself in the renewable energy business, and has a goal to usher the sustainability movement towards the future. His work with the Kayenta Solar Facility does just that.

Reporter Lindsey Clinkingbeard and Glenn Steiger interview together at the Arizona State University campus in Tempe, Arizona
Photo: Conrad Romero

The Kayenta Solar Facility is the newest solar addition located in northern Arizona. According to Steiger, the power plant provides additional power to those who live in the Navajo Nation. Yes, that power is renewable.

Utility companies such as Salt River Project are working with the Kayenta Facility in order to abide with the corporate commission compliance requirement to get 15% of their power from renewable sources. In other states, such as California, the requirements are closer to double of that.

The renewable power source is a first for the Navajo Nation community.

Kayenta Solar Facility – Location via Google Maps

“Solar energy is one of the most cutting-edge technologies today… it will only get better and more efficient,” Steiger says.

Reporter Drake Dunaway traveled to northern Arizona to visit Steiger at the Kayenta Solar Facility, where he was shown exactly where “Kayenta 2” will be built.

Dunaway describes the eye-opening experience of seeing both the solar field and the vast Navajo Nation in person.

“It was a combination of the land’s beauty but also like wow… there is just so much space here,” Dunaway said.

Steiger explains more about Kayenta’s new solar facility in the video below.



Where Are All the Solar Panels, Arizona?

Photo: Julian Wildner
According to Pew Research Center,  9 out of 10 adults in the U.S. are in favor of expanding solar power.
So have you ever wondered why solar panels aren’t on every building in Arizona?

Where Arizona could see a more developed renewable system, road blocks hinder growth throughout the state. Policy issues, big energy companies, and individual consumer costs affect just how much solar power can be utilized.

solar renewable energy do not always favor all parties involved.

Large energy corporations like Arizona Public Service have concerns over billing and purchasing excess solar power from individual solar panel owners. This sparks debate over governmental incentives and net metering.

APS favors buying renewable energy from bigger solar projects, creating a rift between the utility companies and personal solar users.

Photo via Unsplash