During the first decade of the 21st century, TVA continued to focus on energy, environment and economic development while adapting to changes in its business environment and governance structure. TVA introduced the first green power program in the Southeast when it launched the Green Power Switch® program on Earth Day 2000.
In 2005, the corporate governance structure was changed by Congress for the first time in TVA’s history through legislation that established a nine-member part-time board in place of the three-member full-time board. The first directors nominated under the expanded-board legislation took office in March 2006.
To meet a growing power demand, the last of the three reactor units at Browns Ferry Nuclear Plant was returned to service as scheduled in May 2007. The plant was honored the following month with a visit by President George W. Bush, who spoke about the importance of nuclear power in the nation’s energy future. In August 2007, plans were approved to complete construction of Watts Bar Nuclear Plant's Unit 2.
IN 2008, TVA established an environmental policy supporting the production of cleaner and still-affordable electricity. Its objectives were to lower carbon emissions and work in partnership with stakeholders to further the region’s environmental quality.
On Dec. 22, 2008, a storage pond dike failed at Kingston Fossil Plant in East Tennessee, releasing about 5.4 million cubic yards of coal ash. The ash covered about 300 acres, mostly TVA-owned land, and spilled into the Emory River. TVA and other local, state and federal agencies responded diligently. Plans were put into action to restore and improve the affected area and eliminate the wet storage of ash at all TVA fossil plants.