The Tennessee Valley Authority voted Thursday to retire both the Paradise Unit 3 and Bull Run power plants within the next few years.
TVA says the decision was made after extensive reviews and public comments. They say they will work with affected employees and communities.
“We value the contributions of the employees of Paradise and Bull Run, and we will be working directly with them and local communities to ease the transition as much as possible,” said TVA President and CEO Bill Johnson.
TVA spokesperson Scott Brooks says there are more than 100 employees at the Bull Run facility in Anderson County, 40 percent of whom are eligible for retirement.
“The reality is Bull Run has not been running as often as it used to or as often as it could in the last year or two years and there has been no impact to the residential customer, to the business customers,” said Brooks.
The Southern Environmental Law Center call the decision “a step in the right direction.”
“For too long, people who live and work in the Valley have borne the health, environmental and financial burdens of TVA’s over-reliance on coal,” said Amanda Garcia, senior attorney in SELC’s Tennessee office. “By shuttering these coal plants that no longer make economic sense, TVA frees up resources to invest in more renewable resources like solar, which can provide our communities with local jobs and cheaper, cleaner energy.”
President Donald Trump said in a tweet Monday night he opposed the closure of the Paradise Unit 3 coal-powered plant in Kentucky.
Coal is an important part of our electricity generation mix and @TVAnews should give serious consideration to all factors before voting to close viable power plants, like Paradise #3 in Kentucky!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 11, 2019