Utilities provider Florida Power & Light has set its sights on a solar-powered future for The Sunshine State with the announcement of 750 MW worth of new solar projects. Construction is already underway on the new projects which will bring its solar capacity to a whopping 2 GW by the year 2020.
The 750 MW total will be made up from 10 new solar projects which are in the works across the state of Florida. These projects are comprised of 3 million solar panels, which keeps Florida Power & Light on track to meet its “30-by-30” plan to install 30 million solar panels by the year 2030. In addition to the benefits for solar customers - some of the lowest utility rates in the country - these new projects will generate 2,000 jobs throughout the construction period. You can find a list of the 10 new solar plants below:
FPL Babcock Preserve Solar Energy Center, Charlotte County
FPL Blue Heron Solar Energy Center, Hendry County
FPL Cattle Ranch Solar Energy Center, DeSoto County
FPL Echo River Solar Energy Center, Suwannee County
FPL Hibiscus Solar Energy Center, Palm Beach County
FPL Northern Preserve Solar Energy Center, Baker County
FPL Okeechobee Solar Energy Center, Okeechobee County
FPL Southfork Solar Energy Center, Manatee County
FPL Sweetbay Solar Energy Center, Martin County
FPL Twin Lakes Solar Energy Center, Putnam County
This construction news will be particularly interesting for proponents of community solar as 6 of the 10 projects will support FPL’s community solar program. Following construction, the program will have a capacity of 1,490 MW across 20 solar installations - making it the largest community solar project in the United States if approved.
According to Florida Power & Light, the utility bills received by their customers are an eye-catching 30% below the national average. Furthermore, the company credits clean energy projects as a driving force behind these very affordable utility rates for its customers.
Though the Floridian utilities firm continues to depend on natural gas to a large extent, it’s clear that they view renewable energy sources as the way of the future. With the announcement of these new solar plants, they’ve taken vital steps in carving out a path to guide Florida to this renewable future.
By Shane Croghan