Tennessee’s electric cooperatives express concern following the release of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed guidelines that will limit emissions from thousands of existing power plants, including 11 coal plants operated by the Tennessee Valley Authority.
“Estimates indicate that Tennessee will be among the hardest hit by the state requirements, calling for a 38 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2030,” says David Callis, executive vice president and general manager of the Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association. “These regulations will hurt Tennessee families, and we are just beginning to understand how severe the impacts will be.”
Tennessee has already taken significant steps to improve energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions. “The average monthly residential energy use in Tennessee has fallen 16 percent since 2010, and TVA has reduced its carbon emissions by 30 percent since 2005,” says Callis.
“It is important that we make our voices heard. Affordable energy and a strong Tennessee economy depend on an all-of-the-above approach to energy generation.”
Submit a comment to the EPA if you feel inclined:
The EPA will hold a 120-day public comment period, and you can submit your comments to the EPA by visiting takeactionTN.com.
"The economic challenges faced by many cooperative members make it critical that EPA regulatory programs be cost effective and provide environmental benefits that exceed the implementation and compliance costs," says Callis.
Trent Scott, Tennessee Electric Cooperative Association