The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) today approved cost recovery for Duke Energy Florida, LLC’s (DEF) development of five solar projects, totaling 374.1 Megawatts (MW). Over the life of the projects, customer savings are estimated at $37 million, and when carbon dioxide emission costs are included, customer savings increase to $234 million.
“With these five projects, Duke Energy will reach more than 700 MW of solar additions since 2019. Florida customers will continue to benefit from emissions-free, cost-effective energy for decades,” said PSC Chairman Gary Clark. “Customers will also benefit from increased fuel diversity and system reliability, as well as the deferral of new plant construction.”
These projects fulfill the 700 MW capacity allowed through DEF’s Solar Base Rate Adjustment (SoBRA), as defined in its 2017 Settlement Agreement. The PSC found DEF’s solar projects—Twin Rivers, Santa Fe, Charlie Creek, Duette, and Sandy Creek—are cost-effective and meet the agreement provisions.
Each project is designed to be about 75 MW, with in-service dates in February, March and December 2021. Sandy Creek is expected to come online in April 2022, with approved cost recovery for 56.6 of its 74.9 MW, to meet DEF’s authorized recovery of up to 700 MW of solar generation during the agreement term.
DEF requested approval of $62.5 million in total annual revenue requirements for its third—and last—group of projects. A SoBRA allows the PSC to consider adding solar projects to a utility’s rate base without the expense of a full rate case proceeding.
In April 2019, the PSC approved cost recovery for DEF’s first group of solar projects: Hamilton and Columbia, with a total capacity of 149.8 MW. In July 2019, cost recovery was approved for DEF’s second set of solar projects: Trenton, Lake Placid, and DeBary, with a total capacity of 194.4 MW.
DEF serves 1.8 million customers in Florida.
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