Center for Biological Diversity

Media Advisory, November 7, 2023

Contact:

Gaby Sarri-Tobar, Center for Biological Diversity, (202) 594-7271, gsarritobar@biologicaldiversity.org
Emily Sherwood, Sierra Club, (231) 360-8661, emily.sherwood@sierraclub.org

Groups to Rally Wednesday at Tennessee Valley Authority Meeting in Mississippi

TUPELO, Miss.― Grassroots, energy justice, youth and frontline communities will face the Tennessee Valley Authority’s board Wednesday to demand that the utility protect workers and communities and transition to 100% renewable energy. The board meets this week to hear public comments and hold its quarterly meeting.

What: Tennessee Valley community groups and energy justice organizations rally and testify at TVA board listening session.

When: Rally to Clean Up TVA, 1 p.m. CT, Wednesday, Nov. 8; board listening session, 2 p.m. CT, Wednesday, Nov. 8; board meeting, 10 a.m. CT, Thursday, Nov. 9.

Where: Cadence Bank Center, 375 E. Main St., Tupelo, Miss. The rally will be livestreamed. The Nov. 9 board meeting will be livestreamed.

Who: Clean Up TVA Coalition, including Climate Reality Project’s Tennessee State Chapter, the Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club, Sunrise Movement Nashville, NAACP Memphis Chapter, Sowing Justice, Knoxville DSA, Mississippi Rising Coalition and Memphis Community Against the Pipeline, as well as Tupelo Mutual Aid and OneVoice.

Background
TVA, the country’s largest public power provider, generates electricity for 10 million customers in seven states. Just 3% of TVA’s energy supply comes from solar and wind. The utility plans to emit more than 34 million tons of carbon dioxide a year by 2038, according to its own projections.

Under the leadership of TVA CEO Jeff Lyash, the nation’s highest-paid federal employee, TVA has the largest planned gas buildout by 2030 among all major utilities. TVA recently approved a $15 billion budget to accommodate this gas buildout and its first rate hike in four years.

Advocacy groups recently filed a motion to intervene in TVA’s Integrated Resource Plan process and called for public hearings. Groups also demanded that the board extend its listening sessions and facilitate meaningful public participation between communities, TVA board members and staff.

TVA board members appointed by President Biden have the power to phase out the utility’s carbon pollution to meet the president’s climate goals of 100% renewable energy by 2035.

A recent study demonstrates that a transition to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2035 would save TVA customers more than $255 billion over the next 25 years, lower energy burdens and create thousands of new jobs annually. Another study shows thousands of jobs would be created if TVA invests in energy efficiency.

The Clean Up TVA coalition is committed to transforming TVA into a green utility by shutting down coal plants, preventing new fossil gas development, and accelerating a just transition to fossil fuel-free, distributed renewable, affordable and democratic energy for all communities and workers in the Tennessee Valley.

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