Deenise Becenti remembers watching this summer as a Navajo woman who had been waiting more than 20 years to get electricity in her home flipped the switch to turn on the lights for the first time.
“She had a whole lot of happy tears,” said Becenti, spokeswoman for the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority. “It was a very humble day because you knew that she had been waiting for ‘the day’ for a very long time.”
“The day” was made possible by the Kayenta Solar Project, the first large-scale solar farm on the Navajo Reservation and the largest tribally owned renewable power plant in the country. The 27.3-megawatt plant, which went on line last summer, now generates enough power for 18,000 homes on Navajo lands.