TVA Moves To Increase Solar Energy Capacity, Expand Renewable Programs

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The Tennessee Valley Authority is taking steps that could significantly increase TVA’s solar energy capacity in 2014 while ensuring TVA’s green power programs remain sustainable and cost effective.

TVA is offering a total of 126 megawatts of renewable capacity in the coming year through a variety of power-purchasing programs for homes, businesses and commercial installations, marking a 7 percent increase over 2013.

TVA will be adding capacity and reducing pricing incentives to reflect lower technology costs for generators and to support lower electric rates for the Tennessee Valley’s nine million residents.

TVA is revising its three renewable energy programs particularly in response to increasingly popular solar energy, with a majority of new capacity offered at prices competitive with TVA’s wholesale costs.

TVA currently has 128 megawatts of operating or committed solar projects under contract at more than 2,000 locations across the region. TVA’s renewables portfolio also includes 1,500 megawatts from wind and 60 megawatts from biomass.

“Demand for our renewables programs is strong,” said Patty West, director of TVA’s Renewable Energy Programs. “We are working with our local power companies to direct capacity to the most cost-effective programs and streamlining the processes for these programs to make it easier for participants.

“The cost of renewable technologies, especially solar, is dropping dramatically,” she said. “TVA is aligning its program offerings with those declining costs. That means that Valley residents will pay less for renewable energy.”

Program Improvements at a Glance:

Green Power Providers

Renewable Standard Offer

Solar Solutions Initiative

  • Doubling residential capacity

 

  • Removed 50 percent cap on any specific technology

 

  • 60 percent increase in capacity
  • Extending program 2 years to 2015

TVA is doubling the residential capacity set aside in its most popular program, Green Power Providers. TVA is making 10 megawatts of capacity available for these small renewable projects of less than 50 kilowatts.

Capacity also is being increased for mid-size solar projects by 60 percent in the Solar Solutions Initiative program, which focuses on installations from 50 kilowatts to 1 megawatt in size, and encourages use of local installers to support local economies.

TVA will offer 16 megawatts of SSI capacity in 2014, up from 10 megawatts in 2013. TVA also will extend the program, originally a two-year pilot program, for two more years to 2015. 

With 2014 incentives, TVA will pay 14 cents per kilowatt for solar energy through Green Power Providers and 10 cents per kilowatt through the Solar Solutions Initiative, a price reduction of 26 percent and 17 percent, respectively, from 2013.

TVA continues to offer 100 megawatts of capacity available in the Renewable Standard Offer program, which supports large projects between 1 megawatt and 20 megawatts. For 2014, all 100 megawatts of available capacity will be allowed for any of the qualified technologies, including wind, solar and biomass projects. TVA will continue to purchase output at prices competitive with the market.

“We are providing consumers with a renewable energy program that builds upon the success of earlier programs,” Ms. West said. “These programs balance low-cost and cleaner energy resulting in a renewable portfolio that is good for all nine million consumers in the Valley.”


Birmingham’s Good People Brewing To Expand Into Central Tennessee

Good People Brewing Company in Alabama, announced it will begin selling its selection of beers in central Tennessee. Partnering with Hand Family Companies, the Birmingham-based brewery will expand into Chattanooga, Clarksville and Cookeville.  “We’ve got a lot of love for Tennessee at Good People,” said Michael Sellers, who cofounded Good People in 2008 with his friend ... (click for more)

American Advertising Award Winners To Be Honored Feb. 20

The Chattanooga market’s best in advertising, as chosen by the AAF Chattanooga panel of judges, will be honored Saturday, Feb. 20 at The Camp House at the AAF Chattanooga American Advertising Awards celebration. The event recognizes and showcases the area’s "outstanding advertising creative work" for the previous year. The event begins at 6:30 p.m. with cocktails and passed ... (click for more)

Cleveland School Board Votes 5-2 To Terminate School Director Ringstaff Over Twitter Messages

The Cleveland School Board on Friday fired Dr. Martin Ringstaff, director of schools, for sending sexually explicit messages to an anonymous woman a year ago.  His termination is effective immediately and does not include severance pay.  The school board called an emergency meeting after Dr. Ringstaff, who is married, admitted to sending explicit messages to ... (click for more)

History Center Not Giving Out Any More Information On Past Spending Details, Current Status, At This Time

The president of the Chattanooga History Center, which has halted plans for a world class history museum near the Aquarium after raising over $10 million, said no other information will be provided at this time. Chattanoogan.com had sought details about prior spending and the salary of former executive director Daryl Black as well as the center's current status. Jo Coke said, ... (click for more)

A Missing Link In Chattanooga's Crime Prevention Program

I would like to begin by introducing myself. I grew up in Chattanooga and I love this city. As a child, the space program and lunar landings were in full swing. I dreamed of a progressive city. I grew up reading books about space, travel, and superheroes at the Bicentennial Library.  I am the only son of a local pastor and businessman. When I graduated from East Ridge High ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The School’s Search Begins

Jonathan Welch, the chairman of the Hamilton County School Board, had no idea he would be giving himself a well-deserved treat some months ago when he promised his son they would go on a mission trip together. This week has to be the first time his phone hasn’t blinked overload since a December tragedy triggered a tsunami and repeated shock waves that crashed the Hamilton County ... (click for more)