Don Lawson KnoxvilleIn a move very likely to have a negative local economic impact on both Anderson and Knox Counties, multiple news outlets confirmed that the Tennessee Valley Authority voted Thursday to retire both the Paradise Unit 3 and Bull Run coal power plants within the next few years.

The Southern Environmental Law Center call the decision “a step in the right direction.”

An Over-Reliance on Coal Power Plants

“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.”

But while advocacies groups cheered the closings, the economic impact will be felt throughout East Tennessee.

The Costs of Closing Coal Power Plants

The closing of the two plants will cost 167 jobs at Paradise and about 100 jobs at Bull Run, plus hundreds of other coal supply and related jobs in support of the plants. But Johnson said 40 percent of the TVA plant employees whose jobs will be displaced are eligible for retirement and Johnson said those wanting to stay could be offered jobs elsewhere in the utility.

This is similar to what TVA was able to do when it previously shut down the other two older units at Paradise. Many workers also will be needed to run the plants until they shut down and then to help with the cleanup of the plants after their closing.

“The decision to retire these facilities impacts a lot of families,” Allen said during the TVA quarterly board meeting Thursday in Chattanooga. “I also am concerned about the reliability of TVA’s power without these units. Other types of fuel supplies like natural gas and renewable power are not as resilient.”

Contact a Trustworthy Bankruptcy Attorney for Help

While these closures will have both positive and negative consequences; the financial ramifications for our area will be significant. If you or someone you know will be affected by these closures or if you are just overwhelmed with financial troubles, please contact our caring attorneys at our Bond & Botes offices.

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