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FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2007
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TVA pledges long-range energy efficiency in plan

KNOXVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Valley Authority directors pledged in a long-range strategic plan adopted Thursday to make the nation’s largest public utility a leader in energy efficiency improvements in five years.

The initiative comes in response to suggestions from hundreds of TVA customers demanding the agency find ways to reduce power consumption and improve efficiency against forecasts of nearly 2 percent annual growth in electricity demand.

The strategic plan, approved by TVA directors meeting in Columbus, Miss., broadly outlines the Knoxville-based agency’s agenda for serving its 158 power distributors in seven Southeastern states and some 8.7 million consumers over the next decade.

“I believe in the history of TVA that this will go down as one of the key documents and a revolutionary turning event in the history of this organization,” said TVA director Don DePriest of Mississippi.

Director Mike Duncan of Kentucky agreed, calling the plan “a great opportunity for us.”

Nine public meetings generated more than 300 unique comments and suggestions. The plan is TVA’s first since Congress restructured and expanded its board of directors. Just over half of the suggestions related to environmental issues.

Under the plan adopted Thursday, TVA would “strive to be a leader in energy-efficiency improvements and peak (power) reduction in five years.” Director Susan Williams praised the new language, saying the plan “needed a greater emphasis on energy efficiency and conservation.”

“The TVA board did the right thing,” said Stephen Smith, director of the Knoxville-based Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. “We are hopeful that TVA will indeed focus on becoming a partner in innovation to help solve our energy problems.”

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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