N.M Delegation Welcomes $18 million to Lower Energy Costs and Enhance Energy Infrastructure Resilience

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) and U.S. Representatives Teresa Leger Fernández (D-N.M.), Melanie Stansbury (D-N.M.), and Gabe Vasquez (D-N.M.) are welcoming $18 million from the Department of Energy (DOE) — funded through the Infrastructure Law — to lower energy costs,  bolster energy resilience and sovereignty for the Navajo and Hopi Nations and Taos Pueblo, and reduce greenhouse gas pollution.  

“I’m pleased to see Taos Pueblo and the Navajo and Hopi Nations receive this major investment to strengthen energy infrastructure in their communities and achieve greater energy sovereignty,” said Heinrich. “By making energy systems more reliable and resilient, this federal funding will allow Tribes to lower costs for families, drive economic growth, and provide a stable future.” 

“Modernizing infrastructure to be sustainable and climate-friendly is deserving of all communities,” said Luján. “That’s why I’m proud to welcome up to $18 million in DOE funding to Taos Pueblo and the Hopi and Navajo communities. This investment will help bring more solar power to these communities and boost the clean energy workforce. This is one step forward in promoting sustainability and equitable access to clean energy solutions.” 

“I’m happy to welcome $18 million from the Department of Energy to connect indigenous communities with renewable energy sources,” said Fernández. “This federal investment will help Taos Pueblo lower energy costs and provide electricity to Navajo and Hopi homes. When we invest in our infrastructure we create new jobs and new opportunities for our communities to thrive. We are grateful that the Biden administration continues to show their commitment to our tribal communities.” 

“The effects of modernizing our infrastructure will pay dividends for generations to come,” Stansbury said. “That’s why I am so thrilled Taos Pueblo and Navajo Nation and Hopi communities will get up to $18 million combined for new solar and battery storage systems. Many of our Indigenous communities are still not connected to power grids, and this is a huge investment for tribal sovereignty and a climate resilient future.” 

"I am proud to secure funding that will directly address the fact that too many Tribal homes lack access to electricity. Supporting our Tribal communities is always a priority of mine," said Vasquez. "I'm committed to lowering costs for all, and this grant will help alleviate the financial burden on Tribal families, ensure equitable access to essential resources and pave the way for a more sustainable future.” 

DOE Funding Includes: 

$10 million to install a 5 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) and 10 MWh battery storage system located on Taos Pueblo in New Mexico. The project strives to eliminate an estimated 279,210 metric tons of greenhouse gas pollution per year over its 25-year lifespan and facilitate a 33% reduction in energy costs for 2,500 rural, Taos Pueblo Tribal members. Taos Pueblo, as owners of the project assets, will receive income over the project’s generating life, which it anticipates passing on to Pueblo citizens through a direct credit of approximately $700 per household annually. 

$8 million shared between the Navajo and Hopi Nations (New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah) to reduce energy burden and electrify 300 tribal homes by installing 2.5 kW off-grid solar PV and battery storage systems. The project will enhance energy resilience and sovereignty and increase electrification rates within the Navajo and Hopi Nations, which have some of the best solar resources yet lack access to electricity. Additionally, the funding will help provide power to refrigerate food and medicine, improve safety with lighting, and increase internet accessibility. Training will also be offered to equip the local workforce with the skills to pursue careers as solar technicians. 

More information related to these latest grants from DOE can be found here.  

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