Distributed Energy Resources

Knoxville Utilities Board enters agreement with TVA for 212 MW of new solar

Tennessee public power utility Knoxville Utilities Board on March 12 said it has entered a first-of-its-kind agreement with the Tennessee Valley Authority to secure 212 megawatts of new-to-the-grid solar power for its customers.

KUB noted that this new solar investment will generate an anticipated 465 million kilowatt-hours of solar output per year, an amount equal to 8 percent of KUB’s annual electric load.

The agreement was made through TVA’s new Green Invest program, which matches demand for green power from large business and industrial customers with cost-effective renewable projects. 

The Green Invest program helps customers meet long-term sustainability goals and is modeled on TVA’s work with Facebook and Google, beginning in 2018, to identify new renewable energy for data centers locating in the region.

Green Invest is now available to local power companies and business and industry customers across TVA’s service territory. The program leverages long-term agreements to build new, large-scale renewable energy installations in the Valley through a competitive bid process.

In January, TVA reported that a partnership between Nashville Electric Service, Vanderbilt University and TVA to bring new, large-scale renewable energy to the Tennessee Valley marked the first of its kind under the Green Invest program.

TVA in February announced the addition of 484 MW of new contracted solar capacity since December, an increase of 44%.

The five new projects resulted from TVA’s 2019 request for proposals for renewable energy projects and have been matched to customer requests for new renewable energy.

In a first for the agency, 200 MW of solar was contracted by TVA for its REC programs available to Valley consumers, both large and small.

The project was awarded to Origis Energy to construct, own, and operate a solar installation in Lowndes County, Mississippi. The project also includes 200 MWh (or 50 MW for 4 hours) of battery energy storage.

Several additional projects have been contracted under TVA’s new Green Invest program on behalf of large business and industrial customers:

  • Project developer: OPD Energy, MW: 69.3, Location: Simpson Co., KY
  • Project developer: Origis Energy, MW: 100, Location: Obion Co., TN
  • Project developer: Silicon Ranch, MW: Up to 80, Location: Madison Co., TN