Monday, June 16, 2008

TVA in hot water dispute

TVA releases billions of gallons of heated water into the Tennessee River each year, and the electricity-producer is on a path to release more, but the state-issued permit that allows the agency's Watts Bar nuclear plant to dump warmed water back into the river expired two years ago. TVA has asked the state to renew the plant's permit, but state environmental officials said last week they want more information about the water temperature there before they sign off on it. Water that is too hot could hurt the fish and other aquatic life in the river. Watts Bar, which is between Knoxville and Chattanooga, is where TVA plans to build another nuclear reactor. The one unit already in operation there sucks in 150,000 gallons of river water a minute, on average.

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