MLGW Study Confirms Large Savings with Alternative, Cleaner Energy Supply

Memphis Has The Power to Break Free From TVA and Realize These Cost Savings

May 29, 2020
Contact: Kate Tracy, 865-235-1448, [email protected]

Memphis, Tennessee – A draft report commissioned by Memphis Light, Gas and Water (MLGW) shows that Memphis could save $120 million or more per year by leaving the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) and switching to an alternative, cleaner energy supply. The report, which examined possible future energy scenarios for MLGW, confirmed the possibility of more than a billion dollars in savings over the coming decades, savings that several prior studies had already shown if MLGW were to leave TVA in favor of another energy supply.

Additionally, the report shows MLGW’s lowest-cost option for power is also the cleanest. Of the many scenarios that MLGW’s contractor examined, the lowest-cost energy portfolio would get MLGW up to 75% renewable energy, and cut carbon pollution by 50% compared to TVA levels, resulting in better public health, cleaner air, and cleaner water. 

Dr. Stephen A. Smith, Executive Director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy commented, We welcome the findings from this new study which, although conservative, clearly supports MLGW leaving the TVA system, a move that will both lower costs for customers and benefit the environment. The report conducted by Siemens strongly recommends that MLGW explore the market with a request for proposals (RFP), and indicates it is highly unlikely that staying with TVA will be good for Memphis customers in the long term. SACE will dive deeper into the draft report over the coming weeks, but we support MLGW moving forward with developing an RFP quickly to help start the clock on future energy savings.” 

Bryan Jacob, Solar Program Director at the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy stated, “SACE is fundamentally interested in which option will enable MLGW to advance a clean energy resource portfolio. Solar is one of those resource options and today’s presentation shows that MLGW could see much more solar by turning away from TVA, who has blocked the sun in Memphis in recent years.”

The report, authored by MLGW’s independent consultant, Siemens, was covered in a presentation today to the MLGW Power Supply Advisory Team (PSAT), a group convened to offer diverse perspectives from the community on MLGW’s integrated resource plan (IRP), the long-term plan for where MLGW will receive power from for the next twenty years. The actual report will be posted on MLGW’s website this afternoon. The Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) is a member of the PSAT and while we have not yet received a copy of the actual report yet, we will provide a deeper analysis of the IRP in the coming days. 


About Southern Alliance for Clean Energy
Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices to ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at

About Memphis Has The Power
Memphis Has the Power is a campaign to ensure Memphians have affordable, equitable, and clean energy. We are working to achieve energy justice and create a cleaner, more prosperous Memphis. Learn more at