Today, a subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a confirmation hearing for three nominees to the Tennessee Valley Authority Board of Directors. Beth Geer, Michelle Moore and Robert “Bobby” Klein were nominated by President Joe Biden in April of 2021 and have been waiting for confirmation for more than a year. The hearing comes at a critical time for the massive federal utility, which is at risk of not being able to meet quorum for holding its board meetings.
The nine-member TVA board currently hosts only five directors, and three of those seats will be opening in May or soon after. Last November, the undersized board voted to delegate decision-making authority on key coal plant retirement and replacement projects to the public utility’s CEO, Jeff Lyash. If confirmed, the board nominees will bring backgrounds in clean energy and labor to the utility’s leadership team.
Statement from Bri Knisley, Appalachian Voices Tennessee Campaign Manager:
“Communities in the TVA region are facing critical decisions about the future of our energy supply, and those decisions should be made by an informed and representational board that is responsive to community concerns and federal climate commitments. Geer, Moore and Klein have the potential to advance a just, clean energy transition that benefits workers and builds local wealth in this region. A failure to confirm these nominees would be dismissive and incredibly harmful to the 10 million people who are served by TVA and in need of a fully operational TVA board.”
Appalachian Voices is a leading nonprofit advocate for a healthy environment and just economy in the Appalachian region, and a driving force in America’s shift from fossil fuels to a clean energy future.