Flood Damage Reduction

When TVA was founded in 1933, flooding was a serious problem in the Tennessee Valley. Topsoil was eroded, property was damaged, lives were lost. For the new-found agency, flood damage control was job one.

When TVA was founded in 1933, flooding was a serious problem in the Tennessee Valley. Untamed rivers washed away the topsoil, causing severe erosion and limiting farmers' ability to grow crops; poor farming practices compounded the problem. The potential for flood damage increased as cities and towns grew up alongside the rivers. Property was regularly devastated. In many cases, lives were lost.

From the beginning, TVA was charged with coming up with solutions for these problems, and taming the wild waters that were regularly taking such a heavy toll on land and lives.

Today, TVA has a sophisticated system of dams to control flooding along the Tennessee River watershed, and each year it prevents about $260 million in flood damage in the TVA region and along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. To date, the operation of this system has prevented over $5.4 billion in flood losses across the Tennessee Valley, including about $4.9 billion in damage averted at Chattanooga—the Valley’s most flood-prone city. (The system has also prevented about $470 million in flood losses in the lower Ohio and Mississippi River drainage basins.)


Reservoir Information

Get the most up-to-date information on the individual reservoirs TVA manages, including observed and predicted elevations, planned generation releases at the dams, reservoir operating guides, ecological health ratings, fish population survey results, recreation facilities and more.



Lake Info App

Want your lake info to go? Download the TVA Lake Info app, an easy-to-use resource for operating on and around reservoirs and dams in the TVA region. Available for iPhone and Android devices.