One week until deadline to submit TVA 2019 IRP comments

As of Monday April Fool’s Day, the public has exactly one week to submit their comments to TVA’s 2019 Integrated Resource Plan.

The IRP provides a long-term vision for how TVA can best meet the Valley’s need for power during the next two decades. According to the draft, the IRP will impact how TVA supports environmental stewardship, encourages economic development, and offers low-cost electricity in the area.

TAEBC’s utility relations committee will be responsible for drafting TAEBC’s comments, which will be made public to our members and stakeholders. If you would like to participate in this process, please email TAEBC’s vice president Cortney Piper here.

News outlets have been reporting the agency’s plans focus on increasing flexibility, with the addition of smaller-scale and localized “distributed generation” and renewable power sources.

According to the Knoxville News Sentinel, the IRP lays out all combinations of six possible scenarios and five agency strategies. The scenarios are: TVA’s current “base case” projections, an economic downturn, growth of power needs, a strong push to cut carbon emissions, rapid development of distributed generation, and opposition to extending nuclear plant operation.

You can view the draft IRP and submit your comments here.

TVA releases draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) and invites public feedback

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) released its 2019 draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) on Feb. 15, 2019. TVA is currently inviting public stakeholders for feedback on the draft through April 8, 2019. TAEBC will submit public comments for the final IRP.

The IRP provides a long-term vision for how TVA can best meet the Valley’s need for power during the next two decades. According to the draft, the IRP will impact how TVA supports environmental stewardship, encourages economic development, and offers low-cost electricity in the area.

As the utility industry is evolving rapidly, this IRP will improve TVA’s ability to create flexible power-generation systems that will ensure reliable power at an affordable cost. The IRP will also inform TVA’s Long-Range Financial Plan.

TVA is updating its 2015 IRP due to vast changes within the utility industry, including increased access to natural gas, heightened attention on energy conservation efforts, and lower costs of renewable generation. As the nation’s largest public power provider, it is imperative for TVA continually seek out new solutions the region’s energy needs.

This IRP has been under development since Feb. 2018, when scoping efforts first identified issues relevant to the public and provided the foundation for the current draft. During the spring and summer of 2018, TVA began the development of model input and framework process, which involved finding and creating scenarios, resource options, and business strategies.

In the fall of 2018, TVA analyzed and evaluated the performance of their 30 resource portfolios that were identified during the previous modeling process. Throughout this projected 18-month journey, TVA has actively engaged external stakeholders, like TAEBC, to share their assumptions, opinions, and expertise to create an IRP that will benefit all Tennesseans.

In April 2018, TAEBC submitted comments to TVA as part of the initial IRP drafting process. With these comments, TAEBC reaffirmed our commitment to support TVA as it takes steps to address the ever-changing utility marketplace. The purpose of these comments is to illustrate how TVA can best meet future electricity demands with access to economic development data. The guidance we provided included:

  • Ensure there is a collaborative, public, open stakeholder process for developing the IRP.
  • Resource planning should include both TVA-built resources and procured third-party resources; as well as take into consideration customer-sited and demand-side management resources.
  • Correctly valuing distributed energy resources (DERs) is critical to integrating the benefits they offer to both demand and supply side operators. Valuing a stack or system of DERs is a challenge that must be addressed as the net benefits may increase when certain technologies are used together.
  • Consider how the IRP might encourage or discourage economic development, capital investment and jobs in our region from the advanced energy sector.

TVA will hold public meetings throughout the state over the next month to present the plan, answer questions, and accept written comments for the IRP. According to the IRP timeline, TVA will complete public meetings by April 2019, release the final IRP to the public in summer 2019, request approval from the Board in August 2019, and publish a Record of Decision soon after.

To learn more, sign up for TVA’s public webinar on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from 11:00 to 11:45 a.m. Follow this link to register. The recorded version will be available on TVA’s website.

TVA’s 2019 IRP Scoping Report Published with Public Comments

TVA published the 2019 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) Scoping Report on Aug. 1, 2018. The report includes public comments related to TVA’s work on the IRP and the related Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

The IRP is a long-term plan that provides direction on how TVA can best meet future electricity demand over the next 20 years – while the EIS assesses the natural, cultural and socioeconomic impacts associated with IRP implementation.

During a 60-day scoping period that ran from Feb. 14 to Apr. 16, 2018, members of the public provided input online, by mail and at public scoping meetings around issues that are important to them. The scoping report captures these comments, which will help lay the foundation for development of the IRP and EIS.

The scoping report also includes:

  • Information on the resource planning and environmental review process
  • Information on final strategies and scenarios under consideration in the IRP
  • A summary of IRP and EIS topics
  • A look at how the IRP and EIS are being developed
  • Public outreach efforts and materials

For more information on the 2019 IRP, visit tva.com/irp

TVA webinar reveals 2019 IRP schedule, next steps

The Tennessee Valley Authority hosted a webinar in May to provide transparency to stakeholders and the public at-large on the status of the 2019 Integrated Resource Plan.

The 2019 IRP is expected to provide TVA direction on how to best meet future electricity demand. Building upon the work done in prior plans, TVA has started the 2019 IRP to proactively address the changing utility marketplace.

TVA says this latest IRP will explore various scenarios related to the expansion of distributed energy resources in the Tennessee Valley. TVA also is seeking to improve its understanding of the impact and benefit of system flexibility with increasing renewable and distributed resources.

During the webinar, TVA leaders discussed some of the major themes received during the public comment and scoping period which began February 15 and wrapped up on April 16.

TVA received hundreds of comments during that time frame with topics ranging from:

  • Encouragement of clean energy initiatives, renewable energy, and research and development on DERs
  • Call for special attention to environmental justice/affected environment analyses on impacts to limited income households
  • General interest in energy efficiency measures and energy storage alternatives
  • General input on modeling, metrics/calculations and evaluation criteria
  • General comments on fuel diversification options

TVA will now be compiling a report summarizing the scoping input which will describe how TVA is responding to the input during the development of the IRP and the EIS. This scoping report will also detail scenarios, strategies, and energy resources being carried forward in the IRP and IRP EIS analysis. It’s important to note the scoping report is scheduled to be posted to the IRP website in early July 2018.

During the webinar, TVA also provided a schedule and timeline of future milestones regarding the 2019 IRP.

  • By Summer/Fall of 2018, a series of deep evaluations and analysis work will be completed, as well as some initial modeling will be drafted.
  • By Winter/Spring 2019, pending Valley-wide public meetings TVA will present its initial results and publish a draft EIS and IRP.
  • By Spring/Summer 2019, public meetings will have wrapped up and TVA says it will incorporate that input into the 2019 IRP.
  • By Summer 2019, a preferred plan and direction will be identified with TVA’s board approval and a final publication of the EIS and 2019 IRP will be available.

For a link to TVA’s 2019 IRP website, click here.

TVA hosting IRP 2019 Quarterly Webinar

TVA is hosting its first Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) Quarterly Public Update Meeting on May 15, 2018. The webinar will run from 11 to 11:45 a.m. EDT, and participants will need to register here.

The 2019 IRP is a comprehensive study that provides direction on how to best meet future electricity demand. Learn more about the IRP on TVA’s IRP website.

IRP quarterly webinars are designed to ensure continued transparency, information-sharing and public engagement around the development of the 2019 IRP. TVA held a scoping webinar at the kickoff of the 2019 IRP.

At the May 15 webinar, TVA will:

  • Introduce the 2019 IRP – What it is, why TVA is doing it and how it will help determine the Valley’s energy future,
  • Provide an update on where TVA is in the developing process,
  • Summarize public scoping comments,
  • Review next steps.

If interested, please be sure to register.