Tennessee Valley Authority Settlement

The Tennessee Valley Authority, in June 2011, reached a negotiated settlement with North Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky and Tennessee to address excessive air pollution from its coal-fired power plants.

The Tennessee Valley Authority agreed to a $3 billion to $5 billion cleanup of its coal-fired power plants in three states. The settlement of Clean Air Act violations at 11 power plants in Alabama, Kentucky and Tennessee requires the TVA to install new or upgraded pollution controls to reduce smog and acid rain-forming emissions by more than two-thirds. The Tennessee Valley Authority also will spend $350 million on clean energy projects, including $11.2 million allotted for North Carolina.

The settlement allows North Carolina to spend the settlement money over the next five years on energy efficiency and renewable energy projects of the state’s choosing. The state will identify and give preference to projects in the western part of the state, particularly within the Tennessee Valley Authority service area.

Examples of recognized projects include:

  • Purchase and installation of photovoltaic cells and/or solar thermal systems on buildings
  • Projects that reduce idling time from motor vehicles
  • Energy conservation efforts in new and existing buildings, mobile homes and modular buildings, including efficient lighting, appliance efficiency improvement, weatherization and projects that meet the ENERGY STAR® and Home Performance with ENERGY STAR building qualifications, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System or other innovative building efficiency projects
  • Wind or solar renewable energy production facilities
  • Cogeneration units to produce electricity and useful heat at manufacturing plants or universities, hospitals, prisons, military bases and other institutions
  • Assisting in smart regional planning to reduce vehicle miles traveled and improve air quality
  • Installation of geothermal equipment

The N.C. Energy Office held a series of outreach meetings in western North Carolina in Murphy, Waynesville and Boone Dec. 5, 6 and 7, 2011, to gather public views on the settlement.

TVA settlement
Settlement appendix
Announcement of public outreach meetings
Presentation from December outreach meetings
2012 General Assembly directs how TVA settlement funds for 2011 and 2012 are to be spent
Biofuels Center of N.C. issues Request for Proposals for use of TVA Settlement funds (Sept. 2012)
2013 General Assembly directs how TVA settlement funds for 2013 and 2014 are to be spent by the N.C. Agricultural Development and Farmland Trust Fund

For more information, please contact Seth Effron with the N.C. Energy Office at seth.effron@ncdenr.gov or call (919) 707-9200.

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