Florida legislators are trying to push the state toward 100% renewable energy by 2050. State Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-Orlando, and Sen. José Javier Rodríguez, D-Miami, have filed identical bills, which directs the Office of Energy within the state Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to create a unified plan to do just that.
According to Orlando Weekly, the plan would have Florida generating at least 40 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. Cities in Florida such as Orlando, St. Petersburg and Tallahasseehave already committed to running 100% on renewable energy within the next decades.
The bills are HB 1291 and SB 1762.
Florida Energy Initiatives
Just last week, Florida A&M University’s board of trustees approved a partnership with Duke Energy Florida to construct a solar facility. The new solar plant is expected to add nearly 75 megawatts of energy to the grid at the university’s Brooksville Agricultural and Environmental Research Station (BAERS).
The board signed off on a 25-year lease agreement with Duke Energy Florida. It includes a due diligence period for site investigation and permitting before construction starts on the solar project, the university says.
When completed, the solar facility on 600 to 800 acres of property will have around 270,000 tracking solar panels. FAMU says that Duke Energy’s Rattler Solar Power Plant could add 74.9 MW megawatts of renewable power to the grid at BAERS. All the electricity generated will go into the Duke Energy Florida electric grid and get delivered to homes, businesses, schools, places of worship, and other area customers, according to the university.
And in January, Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) announced its “30-by-30” plan to install more than 30 million solar panels by 2030 and make the state of Florida a world leader in the production of solar energy.
FPL has secured solar sites throughout the state, which will enable the company to continue to cost effectively build solar energy centers across Florida. This plan will capture economies of scale and promote the construction of efficient and cost-effective solar generation. The end result will be the largest installation of solar panels by a regulated utility in the world and a 67% fleet-wide reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions rate by 2030 as compared to the national average.
When this plan is completed, FPL expects to be the largest utility owner and operator of solar in America. FPL also will be making investments in advanced and innovative battery storage technology that will extend the use of clean, affordable solar energy even after the sun has gone down.
The 4th Annual Environmental Leader & Energy Manager Conference takes place May 13 – 15, 2019 in Denver. Learn more here.