Muscle Shoals Solar Project

Colbert County, Alabama

The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) requests your comments on the draft environmental assessment for the Muscle Shoals Solar Project in Colbert County, Alabama.

In an effort to increase the amount of renewable energy in its generation portfolio, TVA released a Request for Proposal for renewable energy resources in 2017.  TVA then entered into a power purchase agreement (PPA) with Muscle Shoals Solar, LLC.

Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) and the Act’s implementing regulations promulgated by the Council on Environmental Quality ([CEQ]; 40 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR] 1500-1508), federal agencies are required to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of their proposed actions. This environmental assessment (EA) was prepared to assess the potential impacts of TVA’s Proposed Action (the purchase of power under the PPA) on the environment in accordance with CEQ’s and TVA’s procedures for implementing NEPA (TVA 1983).

TVA’s Proposed Action would result in the construction and operation of the proposed solar facility by Muscle Shoals Solar and actions taken by TVA to connect the solar facility to the TVA transmission system. The scope of this EA therefore focuses on impacts related to the construction and operation of the proposed solar facility and associated modifications to the TVA transmission system.

This EA (1) describes the existing environment at the Project Site, (2) analyzes potential environmental impacts associated with the Proposed Action and the No Action Alternative, and (3) identifies and characterizes potential cumulative impacts from the proposed Project in relation to other ongoing and reasonably foreseeable proposed activities within the surrounding area of the Project Site.

Under the PPA, TVA’s obligation to purchase renewable power is contingent upon the satisfactory completion of the appropriate environmental review and TVA’s determination that the Proposed Action will be “environmentally acceptable.” To be deemed acceptable, TVA must assess the impact of the Project on the human environment to determine whether (1) any significant impacts would result from the location, operation, and/or maintenance of the proposed Project and/or associated facilities, and (2) the Project would be consistent with the purposes, provisions, and requirements of applicable federal, state, and local environmental laws and regulations.

Submitting Comments

Comments on the draft EA must be submitted or postmarked no later than August 15, 2019. They may be submitted online, mailed, or e-mailed to the addresses below. All comments received, including names and addresses, will become part of the project administrative record and will be available for public inspection.

Related Documents

Contact

For more information about the environmental review contact:

Elizabeth Smith

esmith14@tva.gov
400 West Summit Hill Drive, WT 11B-K
Knoxville, TN 37902