TVA Averted Over $800 Million In Flood Damage In January, Officials Say

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Tennessee Valley Authority, through its system of dams and reservoirs, averted more than $800 million in flood damage to communities along the Tennessee River and its tributaries in January, according to officials.

TVA is using its 49 dams to store and then gradually release water after what was the third largest recorded rainfall and runoff for a January in TVA history.

During the month of January, the eastern part of the Tennessee Valley, including Knoxville and the Tri-Cities area, received approximately 10 inches of rain and the area below Chattanooga and West Tennessee averaged about 8 inches of rain. 

“We hold water behind the dams in order to minimize downstream flood impacts. After the high water crested on the Tennessee River and its tributary rivers, we started gradually releasing water out of the tributary reservoirs to recover storage space and to prepare for the next rain event,” said John McCormick, senior vice president, River Operations and Renewables.

TVA engineers use computer flood modeling, water elevation calculations and property value assessments along the Tennessee River and its tributaries to determine flood water impacts if TVA dams didn’t exist.

Areas estimated to have the most structural damage averted in January 2013 are:

·         Chattanooga, $710 million

·         Lenoir City, $61 million

·         Kingsport, $17.4 million

·         Knoxville, $7 million

·         South Pittsburg, $5.5 million

·         Elizabethton, $2.9 million

·         Clinton, $812,000

·         Savannah, $73,000

During an average year, TVA’s reservoir operations avert approximately $250 million in flood damage. TVA estimates it has averted nearly $7 billion in flood damage since it completed its first dam, Norris Dam, in 1936.

TVA continues to release water to recover flood storage space at most of its dams including all nine dams on the Tennessee River.  Excess water is also being released using spillway gates or sluice gates along with generators operating at maximum capacity at all 29 hydro generating dams, producing about 3,300 megawatts of electricity. That is enough to power about 1.8 million homes.

“We try to avoid spilling water because it’s low-cost power generation, but when we have a lot of water our No. 1 priority becomes reducing flood damage risks. This is a perfect example of why TVA lowers the reservoirs to their lowest elevations during the fall and winter months,” Mr. McCormick said.

A graphic depiction of TVA’s operation of the reservoir system is at http://www.tva.com/news/releases/janmar13/averted.html. Information on the river system and specific reservoirs is available on TVA’s Web site at http://www.tva.com/river and on TVA’s free app for the iPad, iPhone and Android devices.  Links to download the apps are available at http://www.tva.com/mobile.  For photos of various TVA dams spilling excess water, visit TVA’s Flickr site at http://www.flickr.com/photos/tennesseevalleyauthority.


Lookout Mountain, Ga., Sets Rules For Use Of Golf Carts On City Streets

The Lookout Mountain, Ga., City Council passed on first reading on Thursday night an ordinance permanently allowing golf carts on certain city streets.    This adopts the city’s current laws that have been in place the last two years.    The police department will continue to enforce the following laws in regards to the golf cart ordinance: ... (click for more)

Soddy Daisy Avoids A Tax Increase

The property tax rate is remaining the same in Soddy Daidy at $1.3524 per $100 of assessed valuation. A public hearing and first reading of the fiscal year 2015-2016 budget took place Thursday night at the meeting of the Soddy Daisy Commission. There were no comments from citizens before it was unanimously approved by the commissioners.   Thomas Edward ... (click for more)

Don't Make A Mockery Of Memorial Day

We're told Memorial Day is the day to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice in order that we, as Americans and others around the world, might live free, unshackled (invisible or otherwise) and without oppression. But how is that so when so many in America continue to be denied those freedoms? Others whose family and friends made the ultimate sacrifice? Their surviving families ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Chincoteague Mourns ‘Dude’

In the span of a person’s life, there are some things that simply can’t be explained to be totally understood. And of all the spectacles I have ever personally witnessed, one of the best is that day in late July when they “pen the ponies” at Chincoteague Island, Va. I’m serious. Over 50,000 people watch every year as volunteer “Saltwater Cowboys” swim the wild ponies to the mainland ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Girls Win Second Straight A-AA Track Title

MURFREESBORO – The Signal Mountain Eagles won last year’s Class A-AA state track title by a scant six points, but it wasn’t nearly that close this year. With Camryn Bowman and McKenzie Ethridge both winning two events, the Eagles had a one-point lead following the field events, but ending up scoring 96 points and winning by 24 over runner-up East Nashville. While Signal Mountain ... (click for more)

Baylor To Face GPS Again For D-II State Softball Title

MURFREESBORO – It will be another Baylor-GPS battle for the championship in Division II softball as Baylor advanced with a 10-3 win over St. Benedict while GPS later beat the Lady Eagles by a 2-0 final for the right to face the Lady Red Raiders again. This year’s D-II tournament was similar to last year as Baylor beat GPS on the first day before the Bruisers came back and beat ... (click for more)