Though both TVA and EPA and quasi-public institutions they have their differences of opinion.
The EPA won this round with some major concessions from the energy giant. TVA will be shutting down 18 of their coal fired power plants (in addition to the 11 which were already scheduled to be shut down).
All of the remaining coal powered plants must install pollution control devices to lower the NOx and SOx and the airborne pollution particulates to below 2008 levels. This will tremendously decrease the poison being released into the air.
TVA estimates that these pollution control devices will cost between $3 and $5 BILLION dollars (for these pollution upgrades).
On top of those upgrades, the coal plant closings, TVA also must fork over some penalties. These penalties are $10 million in punative civil damages. $8 million to the the EPA, $1 million to Tennessee, and $500k to both Alabama and Kentucky.
TVA is also required to do some environmental remediation (to the tune of $350 million) to offset the effects of their previous pollution. These funds will go to programs for efficiency, cleaning up parks, renewable energy implementation, etc.
This is big agreement for TVA. Basically they have agreed to shut down 1/2 of their coal powered energy production AND upgrade all of the rest. They may still be able to generate a lot of coal powered energy, but as these plants close “cheap” energy will receed into the past.
This will absolutely cost more money to the rate payers who purchase energy from TVA. This huge expense comes on top of the $2 Billion cleanup from the Kingston Fly Ash spill of a couple years ago.
Apparently with this agreement TVA is now up to speed with current EPA regulations (for now). Get ready for the rate hikes!