Hot Weather Heats Up Demand for TVA Power
July 6, 2010
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – With above-normal temperatures expected throughout the summer across the Southeast, the Tennessee Valley Authority is encouraging consumers to use electricity wisely.
“While we understand air-conditioning is a necessity, increasing your thermostat a few degrees can still keep you comfortable while saving you a few dollars each month,” said Robert Balzar, vice president of Energy Efficiency and Demand Response. “Also, turning off unnecessary lights and appliances will help considerably in reducing peak energy demand across the region.”
Other energy-saving tips include using the “sleep mode” on computers, keeping curtains closed during the day, and operating dishwashers and laundry machines only with full loads and only after 8 p.m.
Residential electricity use in the TVA region ranks among the highest in the nation, according to data from TVA’s 2007 Residential Appliance Saturation Survey and the U.S. Energy Information Administration. In 2008, Tennesseans ranked No. 1, consuming an average 1,302 kilowatt-hours a month, compared with a national average of 920 kilowatt-hours.
EIA surveys suggest 97 percent of the homes in the TVA region have electric air conditioners, 86 percent have electric ranges and 69 percent have electric water heaters.
Summer energy use is usually highest between 2 p.m. and 8 p.m., during the warmest part of the day and when people arrive home from work.
TVA met a demand of more than 30,000 megawatts on the afternoon of June 22. The TVA system has a summer capacity of more than 36,000 megawatts of available power.
The all-time record demand on the TVA power system was 33,482 megawatts on Aug. 16, 2007, when temperatures averaged 102 degrees.
“TVA has a diverse portfolio of resources available to reliably meet the need, including nuclear, fossil fuels, hydropower and wind,” Balzar said.
TVA is working to reduce peak demand and improve energy efficiency through a number of programs such as TVA’s In-Home Energy Evaluation program offered through participating local power companies. Consumers can schedule a home energy audit by a TVA-certified evaluator and get up to $500 in cash rebates when they make recommended improvements such as replacing windows, repairing ducts, improving insulation or tuning up a heating and air conditioning system. TVA also is expanding its Efficiency Advice and Incentives program to help commercial customers reduce their energy use.
For more information on these and other programs and a list of participating local power companies, visit www.energyright.com.
The Tennessee Valley Authority, a corporation owned by the U.S. government, provides electricity for 9 million people in parts of seven southeastern states at prices below the national average. TVA, which receives no taxpayer money and makes no profits, also provides flood control, navigation and land management for the Tennessee River system and assists utilities and state and local governments with economic development.
Scott Brooks, Knoxville, (865) 632-8031
Media Relations, Knoxville (865) 632-6000