In the 1990s, TVA intensified efforts to further improve efficiency and deliver greater value at less cost. TVA University and TVA’s STAR 7 teamwork initiative supported these efforts and helped TVA complete its 10th consecutive year of stable rates.
Generating capacity was expanded with the restarts of Browns Ferry units 2 and 3 and the start up of Watts Bar Unit 1. TVA also launched its Clean Water Initiative, created regional Watershed Teams and chartered the Regional Resource Stewardship Council to provide citizen input on managing the natural resources of the Valley.
In 1995, TVA unveiled Energy Vision 2020, a comprehensive integrated resource plan that has been used to guide activities on the TVA system.
TVA supported the 1996 Summer Olympics by providing special water releases for whitewater slalom competition on the Ocoee River. The event and its preparation provided $93 million in benefits to Polk County, Tenn., and reduced unemployment there by 26 percent.
In what one observer described as “one of the greatest reclamation success stories of all time,” TVA and its partners restored the Copper Basin region in southeastern Tennessee. The area had been severely degraded by mining operations dating back to the late 1800s.
In October 1999, TVA began its first year of operations without federal appropriations and transferred management of Land Between the Lakes to the U.S. Forest Service. TVA has been entirely self-funding and independent of taxpayer support ever since.