The increase in residential consumption of electricity this winter reflects the unusual cold this year, not a fundamental change in power use, TVA President Bill Johnson said.

TVA is sticking with its forecasts for slower growth in electricity in the coming decade even though power demand jumped last month during the coldest January in nearly three decades. Johnson also said the utility will continue to turn more to natural gas generation to replace aging coal-fired production despite the recent increase in gas prices.

"We have confidence in pretty good stability longer term for gas and I think the equation still moves you to new gas generation rather than retrofits (of older coal plant)," Johnson told analysts today during a conference call about the utility's quarterly results.

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