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TVA Dedicates Magnolia Combined Cycle Gas Power Plant

August 14, 2012

ASHLAND, Miss. – The Tennessee Valley Authority dedicated its largest gas-fired plant, Magnolia Combined Cycle Gas Plant, with a ceremony on Tuesday.

TVA purchased the 968-megawatt natural-gas-fired plant, located near Ashland, Miss., in August 2011.

Tuesday's dedication celebrated Magnolia's distinction as the largest of TVA's five high-efficiency, combined cycle gas plants.

"Magnolia was purchased at less than half the cost of new construction and is helping TVA create a diverse portfolio of cleaner, more efficient generating sources," TVA Chief Generation Officer Kim Greene said.

Local, state and federal officials, including U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi, joined TVA representatives for the event.

"The Magnolia plant promises to be a strong addition to TVA, which has been a significant contributor to economic development in Mississippi," Wicker said. "Energy in America should be affordable and reliable. TVA's addition near Ashland shows how Mississippians are helping to make that happen."

Combined cycle technology captures heat from the turbines' exhaust to boil water, produce steam and generate additional power. Using the excess heat from the engines reduces fuel use and produces fewer emissions.

Another primary benefit of combined cycle combustion turbines is their ability to start up quickly and provide power to meet demand peaks at critical times.

"Magnolia again proved itself as a valuable part of our generation portfolio during this summer's heat wave," said Bob Dalrymple, TVA vice president for Gas Operations. "The plant's generation helped TVA avoid having to buy more expensive market power to meet peak demands."

The three-unit plant, which is connected to a 500-kilovolt TVA transmission line inside the TVA territory, has provided power to TVA since it began operation in 2003. The plant employs about 30 staff members and strengthens the western portion of the TVA power system grid serving northeast Mississippi.

TVA has natural gas plants at 12 other sites in its service region, including four other combined cycle plants — Lagoon Creek and John Sevier in Tennessee and Caledonia and Southaven in Mississippi.

The new facilities are part of TVA's efforts to balance its power portfolio, guided by the Integrated Resource Plan, by adding up to 2,000 megawatts of natural gas-fueled generation by 2020 to replace older coal-fired units.

The Tennessee Valley Authority, a corporation owned by the U.S. government, provides electricity for utility and business customers in most of Tennessee and parts of Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia – an area of 80,000 square miles with a population of 9 million. TVA operates 29 hydroelectric dams, 11 coal-fired power plants, three nuclear plants and 12 natural gas-fired power facilities that can produce about 34,000 megawatts of electricity, delivered over 16,000 miles of high-voltage power lines. TVA also provides flood control, navigation, land management and recreation for the Tennessee River system and works with local utilities and state and local governments to promote economic development across the region. TVA, which makes no profits and receives no taxpayer money, is funded by sales of electricity to its customers. Electricity prices in TVA's service territory are below the national average.

Media Contact

Scott Brooks, Knoxville, Knoxville, (865) 632-8031
TVA Media Relations, Knoxville, (865) 632-6000

TVA Newsroom


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