The state will spend millions of dollars over the next few years to upgrade insulation, switch to more efficient lights and heaters, and effectively cut air pollution. And it will dole out millions more in grants – for businesses, local governments, utilities, and others to do the same, or add wind or solar power.
Over the next five years the state is getting some $26 million from the Tennessee Valley Authority, as part of a national settlement under the Clean Air Act.
Bob Martineau is commissioner of the Department of Environment and Conservation. He says in its first year, the state will upgrade one of its most visible facilities, the Tennessee Tower in Nashville, with insulating film over its hundreds of windows.
“The film project is about a $600-thousand capital investment to put that film on the building, and we get about a $360-thousand energy savings in the first year. So in less than two years, it will pay for that.”
Other projects include a state park converting a few dozen cabins to use geothermal energy, and replacing five state vehicles with battery-powered Nissan LEAFs.