The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Energizing Tennessee

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 24, 2016

The biggest piece of energy infrastructure in Tennessee is the Tennessee Valley Authority, which operates 19 hydroelectric dams and two nuclear power plants in the state. Net electricity generation from hydro in the state was nearly 9.8 megawatthours last year (13 percent of the total), and the state produced more than 289 trillion Btu in nuclear electric power in 2014, more than any other type of energy, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

tenn_thumbnailClick on the thumbnail to open a two-page energy infographic for the Volunteer State.

The state uses a broad range of fuels, led by coal (19.5 percent of the state’s total in 2014), but energy from petroleum and natural gas accounted for 45 percent of overall consumption, EIA says. Tennessee ranks in the middle of the 50 states in oil and natural gas production.

Tennessee illustrates the broader need for all types of energy to keep states and the entire country moving. America’s energy revolution is being led by surging oil and natural gas production, but nuclear, renewables and other fuels are required as well.

The U.S. energy renaissance needs forward-looking policies that provide increased access to energy reserves and that foster innovation and investment. Page 2 of the infographic shows the benefits of a pro-development set of policies – contrasted by the potential negative impacts of policies characterized by regulatory constraints.

Energy is essential for virtually every aspect of our daily lives. It powers national, state and local economies, gets us to work and goes into products we rely on for health and comfort. Safe, responsible energy development here at home is linked to national security as well as Americans’ individual prosperity and liberty – in Tennessee and all the 50 states of energy.


Mark Green joins API after spending 16 years as national editorial writer in the Washington Bureau of The Oklahoman newspaper. In all, he has been a reporter and editor for more than 30 years, including six years as sports editor at The Washington Times. He lives in Occoquan, Virginia, with his wife Pamela. Mark graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in journalism and earned a masters in journalism and public affairs at American University. He's currently working on a masters in history at George Mason University, where he also teaches as an adjunct professor in the Communication Department.