Over the past decade, Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) decisions have considered the public’s best interest and reduced the state’s utility industry carbon emissions. These proactive PSC actions have diversified Florida’s electric generation, increased penetration of renewable energy resources, and reduced Florida utilities’ average CO2 emissions per megawatt-hour produced. As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency finalizes its Clean Power Plan (CPP) rule, released on August 3, it is important to note the achievements our state has made thus far that have benefitted Florida’s air quality.
• In 2008, the PSC amended rules to promote development of customer-owned renewable generation, increasing capacity from 2.8 megawatts (MW) to almost 79.8 MW in just five years.
• In total, 522 MW of non-carbon emitting nuclear capacity was added to Florida’s electric generation over the last decade through the uprate of existing units, and more than 2,000 MW of new nuclear generation is currently under Nuclear Regulatory Commission license review.
• Since 2008, the PSC approved the need for a new Florida Power & Light Company natural gas plant at its West County Energy Center and approved the natural gas conversion of three existing oil plants at Cape Canaveral, Riviera, and Port Everglades to reduce fuel consumption and increase system efficiency. Duke Energy Florida was also granted approval to convert its Bartow plant to natural gas.
• In 2008, the Commission approved 110 MW of utility-scale solar generation for FPL.
• In total, 530 MW of renewable generation has been added to Florida’s energy supply since 2008, including customer-owned renewables, utility-scale projects, and purchase power agreements. This year, an additional 300 MW was approved, including Gulf Power Company’s agreement to deliver enough wind energy to power about 50,700 Florida homes.
• Energy efficiency improvements approved as part of the Florida Energy Efficiency Conservation Act have reduced total electric energy consumption by an estimated 9,330 gigawatt-hours.
In its December 2014 comments to the EPA, the PSC requested that Florida’s significant progress in carbon emission reductions be recognized in the CPP rule. As the PSC works with other Florida state agencies to determine the CPP’s effects on residents should it be implemented, the Commission will continue to make decisions that facilitate safe and reliable electric service at a reasonable cost for Floridians.
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