TVA and Energy
TVA is helping make the Tennessee Valley region a better place to live through its vision to lead the Southeast and the nation toward a cleaner and more secure energy future.
- TVA's vision is to be one of the nation's leaders in improved air quality and increased nuclear production by 2020 and to lead the Southeast in increased energy efficiency.
- TVA's 20-year Integrated Resource Plan reinforces TVA's vision of leadership in providing low-cost, reliable and cleaner energy. The board, which accepted the plan in April 2011, authorized TVA's CEO to use the IRP as a guide in energy resource planning and selection.
As the nation's largest government-owned power provider, TVA delivers competitively priced electric power that gives businesses and families in the region greater opportunity to prosper.
- TVA's power system is one of the most reliable and efficient in the nation, and it pays its own way, receiving no taxpayer dollars.
- In fiscal year 2012, TVA sold more than 165 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity and earned revenue of about $11.2 billion. Net earnings from energy sales are reinvested into system improvements and economic development initiatives.
- TVA's average retail price ranked 39th lowest among the nation's 100 largest utilities in fiscal year 2012 and is on track to be in the top quartile by 2016.
- TVA's transmission system achieved 99.999 percent reliability for the 13th year in a row.
- Reflecting its cleaner energy vision, TVA will rely less on coal and more on nuclear, renewable sources and energy efficiency to meet power demand in the future.
- In April 2011, TVA announced plans to retire two coal-fired units at John Sevier Fossil Plant in East Tennessee, six units at Widows Creek Fossil Plant in northern Alabama and all 10 units at Johnsonville Fossil Plant in Middle Tennessee. TVA also announced plans to idle two units at John Sevier. TVA currently operates 50 coal-fired units at 11 sites.
- The retirements, including the 1,000 megawatts of coal-fired capacity previously slated for idling, mean TVA will have retired about 2,700 megawatts of coal-fired capacity by the end of 2017.
- About 8,000 megawatts of TVA's coal-generation capacity is produced at facilities with advanced environmental controls. TVA is evaluating other units to determine whether to install controls, retire the units or replace them with alternative generation.
- Coal-fired generation represented 13,605 megawatts of net summer capacity in fiscal 2012 and produced nearly 58.6 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity during the year, accounting for about 41 percent of TVA's power mix.
- Additions to TVA's natural gas-fired combustion turbine and combined cycle fleet have helped diversify the power mix. Lagoon Creek, a 550-megawatt combined cycle plant in Brownsville, Tenn., began operating in September 2010 and an 880-megawatt combined-cycle plant entered service in April 2012 at the John Sevier site in northeast Tennessee.
- TVA operates six nuclear units at three sites with a combined net summer capability of 6,710 megawatts. These units generated more than 55 billion kilowatt-hours in 2012.
- TVA's nuclear units provided about 38 percent of TVA power in 2012.
- Strong, safe and reliable nuclear performance in fiscal year 2012 helped offset effects of peak demand during a record hot summer and extremely cold winter.
- Watts Bar Unit 2 near Spring City, Tenn., is under construction and expected to begin service by December 2015.
- Safety is TVA's top priority. TVA's nuclear plants are designed, built and operated to run safely and to properly shut down when conditions warrant. The reactors are designed and maintained to handle situations that may result from natural or man-made disasters. TVA will incorporate lessons learned from events in Japan into its existing plants, the construction at Watts Bar and projects that may be considered in the future.
- TVA is evaluating the need to complete two generating units at its Bellefonte Nuclear Plant in northern Alabama. In 2009, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission reinstated construction permits for Bellefonte Units 1 and 2. Construction on the reactors was halted in 1988 after growth in power demand declined. Any decision to complete construction and restart the Bellefonte units must be made by the TVA board of directors.
- The TVA hydro system consists of 113 units at 29 hydroelectric dams and one pumped-storage plant with a combined summer net generating capacity of 5,447 megawatts.
- TVA's hydro system generated 12.8 billion kilowatt-hours of electricity in fiscal year 2012.
- In 2012, about 47 percent of TVA's power generation was from clean energy sources, defined as energy produced from low- or zero-carbon-emitting resources, including renewable and nuclear power. TVA projects that low- and zero-carbon-emission sources will make up at least 50 percent of its generation portfolio by 2020.
- TVA defines renewable energy as generation that is sustainable and often naturally replenished. In 2012, TVA increased its portfolio of renewable generating assets to 5,680 megawatts. Another 593 megawatts of renewable generation, which includes wind, solar, biomass and hydroelectric resources, are approved, contracted or committed for activation in the near future. TVA also purchases renewable energy for distribution to its customers.
- TVA began receiving 300 megawatts of wind power from the Midwest in fiscal 2010, part of a plan approved by the TVA board of directors to purchase up to 2,000 megawatts of clean and renewable energy by 2011.
- TVA's Green Power Switch program offers consumers a choice to buy renewable energy. The program has nearly 12,000 residential and more than 500 business subscribers. TVA's Green Power Providers program gives homeowners and businesses an opportunity to own and generate their own renewable energy, which TVA buys at a premium price.
- TVA has also adopted Energy Efficiency and Demand Response guiding principles to slow the growth of energy demand by providing opportunities for residential, business and industrial energy efficiency. Since 2008, TVA has partnered with regional power distributors and energy management contractor EnerNOC to reduce demand during specified peak times.
- TVA conducts research that addresses intermittency, cost and sustainability issues associated with clean and renewable energy technologies.