The University of Tennessee, KnoxvilleThe Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy

Base-load Electricity from Natural Gas and Nuclear Power: The Role of Federal and State Policy

A Symposium of the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy September 20-21, 2012

This symposium explored how federal and state policies affect new base-load capacity from natural gas and nuclear power.  A report on the symposium is available here white paper Sept 20-21 symposiumFINAL

For the symposium agenda with links to its presentations, click here. For a list of the symposium planning team members, click here. For short bios of the session chairs and speakers, click here.

The symposium featured a comparative analysis of the technical, economic, environmental, human, health, safety, and national security attributes of these two electricity sources with the context of current prospective federal and state policies. The southerastern United States, especially the Tennessee Valley region, was the geographic focus, but national factors and implications also were considered. The comparative analysis used four illustrative case examples, two from the public sector and two from the private sector:

  • The John Sevier combustion-turbine combined-cycles (CTCC) plant of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) in northeastern Tennessee.
  • TVA’s possible small modular reactor project at its Clinch River Site in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
  • The Sutton CTCC plant of Duke Energy near Wilmington, North Carolina.
  • The Westinghouse AP-1000 project of the Southern Company at Plant Vogtle Units 2 and 4 in eastern Georgia.

Each of the three half-day sessions featured short talks bu regionally and nationally recognized experts followed by panel and participant discussion. Attendance was by invitation only, with a total of about 70 participants from the electric power industry, regulatory agencies, research institutions, and other non-governmental organizations. The Tennessee Valley Authority was the lead sponsor of the symposium; America’s Natural Gas Alliance and Spectra Energy were contributing sponsors.


For further information, please contact
Mary R. English, Ph.D
Fellow for Energy and Environmental Policy
Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy