TVA has forged cooperative agreements with a variety of federal and state agencies and private organizations dedicated to the protection of biodiversity in the southeastern United States.
To ensure that essential information concerning a wide array of projects is made available, TVA has established data-sharing agreements with regional state heritage programs and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
It has also formed partnerships with other agencies to protect and monitor endangered species and habitats. Of the 122,000 acres of TVA land designated for natural-resource management, 40 percent, or almost 49,000 acres, is managed as wildlife refuges by TVAs partners.
These arrangements have proved invaluable in the protection and management of TVA Natural Areas, especially those that provide sanctuary to rare plants and animals. For example, TVA and the Nature Conservancy are partners in the Clinch Valley Forest Bank, which helps conserve woodlands. And through its partnerships with Trout Unlimited and the Bass Anglers Sportsman Society (B.A.S.S.), TVA continues to improve the condition of Tennessee River watershed fisheries.
TVA works with various agencies to study and monitor regional air quality as well. Environmental regulators from Alabama, Kentucky, and Tennessee have joined TVA scientists in setting up a cooperative network to monitor fine particulate matter in the air of regions cities.
Of particular concern to TVA is the ecological health of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The park, recognized as a national treasure, is threatened by ozone pollution, acid rain, and loss of visibility.
TVA is taking part in a number of projects designed to study these problems. Its collaborators include the National Park Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, the Department of Energy, the U.S. Geological Survey, EPRI (the Electric Power Research Institute), and numerous universities and state and local governments.