Do Southeastern utilities deserve high marks for helping manufacturing?

Site Selection magazine’s annual rankings of top utilities for economic development routinely features the four large Southeastern utilities: Southern Company, Tennessee Valley Authority, Duke Energy and Florida Power & Light. But is there room for improvement? YES! In the Southeast, utilities’ energy efficiency programs, and overall utility planning, fail to focus on critical manufacturing growth issues. [...]

Duke dealt largest federal criminal fine in NC history for coal ash crimes

On May 14, 2015, Duke Energy pled guilty to 9 criminal misdemeanor violations of the Clean Water Act. The charges stemmed from a widened investigation, after the Dan River disaster, that found violations at Duke-owned facilities in Buncombe, Chatham, Wayne and Gaston Counties in North Carolina. Duke negotiated a plea bargain that included $68 million [...]

Knoxville Receives $7.12 Million from TVA for Lower-Income Energy Efficiency Program

Thanks to collaborative community efforts and new funding from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), hundreds of lower-income residents in Knoxville will soon have much more affordable utility bills. TVA recently announced the first round award winners in the Extreme Energy Makeovers project, part of TVA’s Smart Communities program. Knoxville received $7.12 million – after applying [...]

TVA 2015 IRP Public Comment Period Closes – What’s Next?

While the scope of TVA’s IRP process has been unprecedented in the Southeast, some significant gaps between the IRP planning intent and recent decisions by TVA’s management and Board of Directors still exist. Even as electric demand growth has slowed to only 1% per year, TVA’s capital budget for 2015 is a record $3.5 billion. While TVA claimed that these decisions (below) were consistent with the 2011 IRP, this capacity expansion policy exists concurrently with TVA’s failure to invest in energy efficiency and meet the modest energy efficiency commitments made in the 2011 TVA IRP.

A Bright, Sunny Forecast for the Tennessee Valley

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is farsighted, not shortsighted, when it comes to its efforts to evaluate and plan for solar power in its future. The 2015 Draft Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) provides the clearest, sharpest look ever by a Southeastern utility at solar energy as a resource – and not a threat – to this amazing, clean energy opportunity. [...]

TVA 2015 Draft IRP Views Clean Energy Through a Blurred Lens

If you’re like me, you are nostalgic for the days when the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) brought innovation, increased economic development and low-cost energy to the Tennessee Valley.  TVA’s recently released draft 2015 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) outlines five alternate energy scenarios under which TVA could implement various resource planning strategies to meet both short- and [...]

Understanding Historic Windows: Value and Efficiency

This guest post was written by Sean Stucker, Director of Facilities for Historic Columbia Foundation in Columbia, S.C., and originally published here in the Columbia Star Newspaper on March 6, 2015.  Especially this time of year, as thermometers everywhere register remarkably low temperatures, owners of historic buildings might begin to wonder if they should just [...]

New Report: Alabama ratepayers are “Left in the Dark” by PSC

How do ratepayers usually know whether or not the electricity bills they pay are fair? In many states with monopoly investor-owned electric utilities, ratepayers typically have access to and can participate in the utility’s process for deciding what sources of energy to invest in. State regulators publicly review and approve a key utility document called [...]

Black History Month Energy Champions: Rep. Johnnie Turner Recognizes the Energy and Poverty Nexus

In honor of Black History Month, SACE is publishing a blog series highlighting the efforts of African American leaders working to ensure that clean energy opportunities are available for all people and communities in the Southeast. This post is the final in the 2015 series; find previous 2015 posts here. TN State Representative Johnnie Turner is no stranger [...]

Black History Month Energy Champions: Jimmie Tucker Knows the Importance of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

In honor of Black History Month - SACE is publishing a blog series highlighting the efforts of African American leaders working to ensure that clean energy opportunities are available for all people and communities in the Southeast. This post is the second in the series; find additional posts here. As one of the founding principals of a successful [...]