Tennessee Valley Authority Essay

This essay has a total of 725 words and 4 pages.

Tennessee Valley Authority



Tennessee Valley Authority

In 1933, Congress created the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) as a federal corporation.
TVA was perhaps the most original and broad reaching program to come from FDR's 'New Deal'
to put America back on its feet. The TVA was created to improve and develop the Tennessee
River Basin which reached across 7 states in the South '...an act to improve the
navigability and to provide for the flood control of the Tennessee River; to provide for
reforestation and the proper use of marginal lands in the Tennessee Valley; to provide for
the agricultural and industrial development of said valley; to provide for the National
Defense...'

One of the main concerns of the TVA was to bring electricity to the rural areas in the
Valley where few people had access to electricity. Power companies argued that it was too
expensive to string the necessary lines to bring power to rural areas. FDR believed that
if private enterprise could not supply electric power to those people, then it was the
Government's responsibility to do so. In 1935, the Rural Electric Administration (REA) was
created in order to bring power to the people. In a 1935 article, Morris Cooke, the head
of REA, stated that...

'In addition to paying the energy he used, the farmer was expected to advance to the power
company most or all of the costs of construction...such costs were prohibitive for most
farmers.

In addition to electric power, the TVA built dams to provide other benefits. The dams
serve to increase the water supply in the region, provide flood control and also lakes for
recreation. There are nine major dams in the area, which created a navigation channel from
Knoxville, TN to Paducah, KY. The channel connects the Ohio River and serves to lower
flooding on the Tennessee, Ohio and Mississippi rivers. Reforestation from flood damage,
agricultural assistant and many other programs came from the development of the TVA. FDR's
program brought jobs to many people. Construction of the dams and development of the
surrounding areas was a major project. Labor and materials were both needed to see the
project through. Industries moved to the area due to the low cost of power and access to
waterways. Towns and communities were built throughout the region for the workers to live
in. The Writers Work Project wrote brochures and informational essays on the area to
promote it. TVA became a great success and seemed to be just the push the country needed
out of the Great Depression.

Opposition to TVA came mostly from private enterprise. Wendall Wilkie, president of a
large power utility, Commonwealth and Southern Company led the fight against TVA. Many
court cases in the 1930's involved the TVA and the main thrust of the suits claimed that
the government was exceeding its Constitutional powers by entering into the electric
Continues for 2 more pages >>




  • Politics and media
    politics and media Politics and the media have long been intimately involved with each other, with media strongly setting an agenda in which politics is very important. (Harris 1999,p.167) "Our perceived reality of the real world is largely a product of the media." (Harris 1999,p.186) It is not known which influences more but there are definitely two sides to the story. Many studies have been done to decide but each comes out with different answers. Many say that the media has more of an impact
  • Politics and the media
    politics and the media Politics and the media have long been intimately involved with each other, with media strongly setting an agenda in which politics is very important. (Harris 1999,p.167) "Our perceived reality of the real world is largely a product of the media." (Harris 1999,p.186) It is not known which influences more but there are definitely two sides to the story. Many studies have been done to decide but each comes out with different answers. Many say that the media has more of an im
  • Political Communication
    Political Communication Politics and the media have long been intimately involved with each other, with media strongly setting an agenda in which politics is very important. (Harris 1999,p.167) "Our perceived reality of the real world is largely a product of the media." (Harris 1999,p.186) It is not known which influences more but there are definitely two sides to the story. Many studies have been done to decide but each comes out with different answers. Many say that the media has more of an im