Wally Haase, general manager, Navajo Tribal Utility Authority, spoke at the American Public Power Association’s National Conference on June 19, 2018, regarding the use of distributed generation to power some Navajo houses.
“Now that's great, and it works. It gives you maybe an hour or two of television at night, and you get some lights. If your wife wants to run a hair dryer, or if you buy the wrong coffee maker, the system crashes, okay?
“So, as you go through that distributed generation model, those units cost $18,000 to buy and have fully installed. But their life expectancy — even though the solar folks tell you it's a long time, this is our fifth generation, I'm designing and looking at the sixth generation. They last about 10 years, because the new units come in, are so much greater than the old units, that people don't want the old units because they just don't do much, you know, over time.
“The second question is, "I don't have 50 homes in a community. If I had had 50, or 15, micro-grids would make a lot more sense. I'm lucky if I've got four or five."