“With a heavy heart,” the City of Farmington has decided to abandon its plans to salvage hundreds of jobs connected to the San Juan Generating Station (SJGS) by retrofitting the plant with carbon capture technology.
The Albuquerque Journal reported, “The city announced its decision late Tuesday to end all efforts to acquire the plant from Public Service Company of New Mexico and other co-owners after an arbitration panel for transfer negotiations refused to block PNM and the other utilities from moving forward on decommissioning and demolition preparations. The city said the arbitration panel’s position struck a ‘catastrophic blow’ to the plant conversion effort, which Farmington has pursued for more than four years with private development partner Enchant Energy Corp.”
“Given PNM’s and the other co-owners’ actions to quickly dismantle SJGS, and the (arbitration) panel’s recent decision to allow them to do so, we have arrived at a point where those actions directly undermine the viability of successful implementation of the carbon capture project,” Farmington Mayor Nate Duckett wrote in a statement.
Farmington owns a five percent stake in SJGS, which closed on September 30, 2022.
According to PNM, the Generating Station will begin to be demolished in the spring of 2023, expected to last two to three years.
With the closure of the San Juan Generating Station, it has purged countless jobs, with only around 80 employees able to retire. “For the rest of the employees, though, they’re going to have to go find some other form of employment,” said plant manager Omni Warner.
The AP reports, “El Paso Electric, a utility that serves customers in southern New Mexico, also is expecting a capacity gap next summer. Like PNM, El Paso Electric will have to buy power from other producers to ensure adequate capacity when customers crank up their air conditioners during the hottest of days.”
With the critical energy plant shuddered, utilities are being forced to raise their rates, such as PNM, which is requesting to raise rates due to the enviro-Marxist “Energy Transition Act,” the state’s version of the Green New Deal signed by Democrat Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham in 2019.
After the news of the San Juan Generating Station’s imminent demolition, radical environmentalists rejoiced.
Mike Eisenfeld, the “energy and climate program manager” with the eco-left San Juan Citizens Alliance, said, “The city needs to reevaluate its perspective on energy development and focus on renewable energy to create jobs and improve the environment.”