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Gallatin Fossil Plant Rail Delivery Coal Unloading and Blending Facility

Sumner County, Tennessee

TVA prepared this Final Environmental Assessment (FEA) and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) to provide information to TVA decision-makers regarding the potential for environmental impacts of alternative actions. This FEA and FONSI, as well as public comment received and pertinent financial and other considerations will be weighed in the decision on whether or not to implement the proposal. TVA has not made any final commitment to proceed with the rail delivery of coal into Gallatin. A recommendation on changing to rail delivery would require approval by the TVA President and Board.

TVA’s determinations regarding significance of impacts have been made consistent with NEPA, Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations in 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508 (particularly 1508.27 pertaining to determination of significance) and TVA agency regulations for implementing NEPA. In determining the levels of potential impacts, TVA’s analysis was informed by federal guidelines and criteria, and by criteria established in the local community ordinance. Additionally, TVA has utilized the services of independent engineering firms to validate the approach, assumptions, methods, calculations, and reasonableness of conclusions for the analyses of traffic impacts, and to identify those residences along Steam Plant Road potentially needing mitigation of noise impacts.

As part of the Tennessee Valley Authority’s continuing efforts to provide low-cost, reliable power, TVA is proposing to re-institute the delivery of coal to the Gallatin Fossil Plant (GAF) by rail instead of the current method of delivery by river barge. With changing market conditions, substantial cost savings for the continued operation of GAF could be realized, enabling Gallatin to remain a competitively priced option for power generation. Until 1996, TVA received coal for the operation of GAF by rail; and from1996 to the present, has received coal by barge.

The physical additions and modifications to GAF from the proposed action include: the installation of a new Rapid Discharge Rail Delivery Coal Unloading and Blending Facility; modifications to approximately 8 miles of the existing rail spur line; rail unloading and conveying structures and the addition of new coal blending capacity. Deliveries of coal would involve arrival and departure of one train per day, five days per week, or about 250 deliveries per year, along the CSX line within the City of Gallatin. TVA also considered the No Action Alternative (i.e., continue delivery of coal by barge for which none of the listed modifications would be necessary). TVA scoping and analyses for the proposed action of the draft EA has identified potential socioeconomic, transportation and noise impacts in and around the city of Gallatin.

TVA invited comment from the public, other governmental agencies and local officials on the alternative actions through June 27, 2005. Additionally, a public meeting was held on Tuesday, June 21, 2005 to obtain comments on the proposal. The meeting was held at the Gallatin City Hall Basement at 132 West Main Street, Gallatin Tennessee. Appendix A of the FEA contains TVA’s responses to the questions and comments received during the public comment period. TVA’s analyses conducted for the FEA encompassed all the issues identified in public scoping. Notwithstanding TVA’s finding of no significant impact signifying the completion of its NEPA review, the agency is continuing to voluntarily work with the City of Gallatin to identify other practical mitigation measures to further reduce the impacts of rail delivery.


PDF files, require Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Final Environmental Assessment (PDF, 2.6 Mb)

Finding of No Significant Impact (PDF, 27 kb)


For additional information contact:

David Robinson
Tennessee Valley Authority
1101 Market Street MR 2T
Chattanooga, TN 37402
Phone (423) 751-2502
Fax (423) 751-3230

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