April 6 (Renewables Now) - The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), an agency that serves parts of seven southeastern states, is looking at the environmental impacts of a plan to allow local power companies (LPCs) to reduce purchases of energy from TVA and produce on their own.
Up to 720 MW of solar and 80 MW of natural gas-fired power plants could be installed by LPCs under the so-called “power supply flexibility option”, the agency said in the draft Environmental Assessment (EA).
The proposal is to allow LPCs with long-term partnership agreements with the agency to reduce by up to 5% the amount of power they buy from it and install own power generation capacity. If all 154 LPCs across the Valley participate and develop the maximum allowable capacity, they will add 800 MW in total. Based on discussions with LPCs, TVA expects the own capacity to be deployed to include up to 90% solar in combination with 10% natural gas. Diesel- or coal-fired power will not be allowed.
Two other scenarios are being considered. In one of them all capacity additions are solar, while in the other solar and natural gas generation have equal share of 50%.
TVA is seeking public input on the draft Environmental Assessment by May 4, 2020. The plan is in line with its 2019 Integrated Resource Plan and strategic financial plan, under which the agency is preparing for an expansion of distributed generation, which will help cut carbon emissions (CO2).
The agency serves parts of alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, East, Middle and West Tennessee, and Virginia.