Poll: Majority of Tennessee Voters Support Solar and Oppose Fixed Charges On Bill or Restrictions to Customer Choice

Recent polling conducted by North Star Opinion Research shows widespread support throughout Tennessee for solar energy as well as strong opposition to solar market barriers currently being erected by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) such as fixed (mandatory) monthly charges and limitations to customer choice.

New Solar Choice Coalition Launched in Tennessee

SACE was proud to join founding members of Tennesseans for Solar Choice gathered in Nashville on November 8th, 2017 to launch a new initiative in defense of energy freedom and fair access to affordable, solar energy.

Georgia is whupping Tennessee in more than just football this year

Let’s talk about the ridiculously lopsided football game at Neyland Stadium last week. The University of Georgia (UGA) pummeled the University of Tennessee (UT) 41-0…in UT’s own backyard. This annual match is usually competitive, but this year, UT suffered their first shutout in over 20 years. But have you noticed that Georgia is whupping Tennessee in more than just college football this year?

Is TVA Causing a Solar [Market] Eclipse?

TenneSEIA, the Tennessee Solar Energy Industries Association, issued a press release yesterday about TVA’s decision to continue restricting the Green Power Providers program. TVA is withdrawing support for solar power and, much like the solar eclipse we’ll all see on Monday, TVA is blocking the sun.

Memphis Wins BIG in the Solar in Your Community Challenge!

Summer is just around the corner and the sun is already shining on Memphis, TN. Five Memphis teams are moving forward to the next phase of the SunShot Prize: Solar In Your Community Challenge, a Department of Energy initiative aimed at increasing opportunities and access to solar resources in lower-income communities (The State University of New York Polytechnic Institute will administer the Challenge). Memphis is prime real estate for solar projects, thanks both to geography and the long hours of sunlight we get throughout the year. Couple that with a high number of communities living in poverty and in need of cheap power – the SunShot Challenge is a perfect fit for Memphis.

Clearing the Air: Lamar Alexander, You’re Wrong About Wind Power

Sen. Alexander says that wind power is expensive. However, his information is outdated. With its considerable wind energy resources, Oklahoma had the lowest electricity prices in the country last year. Tennessee ranked #28. Analysis by Leidos Electrical shows that Plains and Eastern Clean Line project could more than likely reduce electric rates in the Tennessee Valley, and beyond. In November 2016, Lazard Associates published their annual Levelized Cost of Energy analysis showing that the lowest cost wind power resources reach $14/MWh (1.4 cents per kilowatt hour, kWh). A new report from Moody’s Investor Services reports wind power prices for $15/MWh (1.5 cents per kWh). In 2015, Georgia Power received wind power proposals with pricing of $15.77/MWh (1.577 cents per kWh). As an already-operating wind project, the Balko Wind project in western Oklahoma sold wind power to the Public Service Company of Oklahoma for $15.80/MWh (1.58 cents per kWh). HVDC transmission charges may add an additional 2 cents per kWh. Additionally, TVA can earn revenue by using their existing transmission system to “wheel” low-cost wind power to power-hungry neighbors.

The Local Power Company of the Future?! Chattanooga’s EPB Lights the Way for Others

Imagine a world where your local power company calls you and tells you they’ve identified a potential problem with your home that is causing you to have unnecessarily high utility bills.

Imagine a representative of your local power company showing up at your front door to investigate the problem.

Imagine finding out from your power company that you have a problem with your heating and cooling system and that they are going to help fix it.

Imagine getting a lower utility bill.

Sound too good to be true? Well, the Southeast is home to a utility that is already doing this – and providing low cost internet and television service to their customers. Chattanooga Electric Power Board (EPB) is setting a new standard of service for local power companies and SACE staff recently got a peek behind the scenes to learn more about how EPB is paving the way towards a more service oriented utility.

Delivering low-cost renewable energy to the Southeast

Wind resources from western Oklahoma and Texas – where the Clean Line and Pattern Energy transmission line projects will source wind – are being marketed at prices around $20-30 per MWh. That’s comparable to the price of operating a modern natural gas power plant, making wind not only cost-effective but a guaranteed low-cost electricity source for decades in the future.

Solar In The Southeast, Fall Update

Thanks to weak or non-existent policies, inconsistent incentives, and a myriad of other excuses, the Southeast, as a whole, has yet to live up to its high solar potential. The last several months have brought some interesting developments though, some good and some challenging. Here’s a quick overview of the key takeaways, from North to South.

Chattanoogans Ask TVA for Help With Energy Efficiency

This blog is the third in a series SACE is publishing on recent energy efficiency advocacy meetings between Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and community members across the Tennessee Valley. The first blog, focusing on TVA customers in rural East Tennessee, can be found here, and the second blog, focusing on customers in Memphis, can be [...]