The Tennessee Valley Authority has released its final Integrated Resource Plan and associated Environmental Impact Statement, which evaluate options to meet the region’s power generation needs over the next 20 years.
TVA is updating its 2015 IRP due to continuing dramatic changes in the utility industry, such as: abundant, lower-cost natural gas; decreased cost of renewable generation; and increased focus on energy conservation efforts.
Under development since February 2018, TVA’s IRP is a power planning roadmap that examines a variety of economic, regulatory and market-driven scenarios and strategies – both within and outside TVA’s control – to help TVA respond to changing energy demands while continuing to provide reliable power at the lowest possible cost.
“The 2019 IRP emphasizes the importance of flexibility in our generation in response to the changing energy marketplace,” said Laura Campbell, TVA vice president of enterprise planning. “TVA looked at a wide range of possible futures, and flexibility is important in every case to ensure a reliable power supply.”
Click here to view the final IRP and its associated EIS.
The IRP study demonstrates that TVA will continue to provide low-cost, reliable and clean electricity into the future and that resource additions will build on TVA’s existing asset portfolio. IRP study results show:
- There is a need for new capacity in all scenarios to replace expiring or retiring capacity.
- Solar expansion plays a substantial role in all futures.
- Gas, storage and demand response additions provide reliability and/or flexibility.
- No baseload resources (designed to operate around the clock) are added, highlighting the need for operational flexibility in the resource portfolio.
- Additional coal retirements occur in certain futures.
- Energy efficiency levels depend on market depth and cost-competitiveness.
- Wind could play a role if it becomes cost-competitive.
- In all cases, TVA will continue to provide for economic growth in the Tennessee Valley.
TVA is a corporate agency of the U.S. that provides electricity for business customers and local power companies, serving nearly 10 million people in parts of seven southeastern states. About 10% of TVA’s generating portfolio is hydropower, with 29 hydroelectric plants and one pumped storage plant.