On the week of January 14, bitter cold brought historic demand for electricity across the Tennessee Valley region. On Wednesday, January 17, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) set a preliminary all-time, record peak of approximately 34,524 megawatts. The previous all-time record was 33,482 in August of 2007.
I am extraordinarily proud that, working together, we collectively met that demand and kept folks across the region safe and warm. Of course, keeping the lights on is our job. But it’s important to acknowledge the effort everyone, from linemen to plant operators to those staying warm at home, played in ensuring people across our seven-state region had power during the extreme cold.
After Winter Storm Elliot in 2022, TVA undertook an extensive review that led us to take more than 250 immediate, corrective actions. In addition, in the last three months, we’ve invested nearly $123 million to harden the system and enhance reliability and resiliency at our coal, gas, and hydro facilities. This included adding insultation and enclosures around exposed equipment to prevent freezing and installing state-of-the-art smart heat trace monitoring systems, to help us be more responsive to potential issues. During January’s extreme weather, those investments helped us keep assets operating.
We worked closely with electric cooperatives and other local power company partners to help get the word out to conserve energy during a four-hour peak period on Wednesday, January 17. Small measures undertaken by everyone across the state – turning the thermostat down a few degrees or waiting to start the dryer until later in the day, played a big role in helping us protect the grid. We are working to quantify that, but it’s important everyone across the region knows they played a role in helping us keep the lights on.
Thank you to everyone for the role you played in meeting this historic demand. Your efforts were essential and appreciated, and I’m very grateful for your partnership.
President and CEO, Tennessee Valley Authority