General and Florida
FPL, the biggest U.S. generator of power from wind, has added 722 megawatts of wind power in the past year, and an additional 330 megawatts are under construction, Chief Executive Officer Lewis Hay, 50, said in the statement.
The company envisioned a $45 million project with six wind turbines as tall as 40-story buildings, at about 400 feet, taller than the Statue of Liberty. The site was FPL land surrounding its nuclear plant.
"We didn't want them to ruin our beaches in a place where there is no wind," said Julie Zahniser, founder of the Save St. Lucie Alliance.
With the addition of more than 445 megawatts of new wind capacity since January, FPL Group, the parent company of Florida Power & Light Co., has become the largest owner and operator of wind power in the world.
The wind may be blowing hard enough in Florida to produce electricity after all.
Florida Power & Light Co. said Thursday it intends to explore building a wind-power project near the coastline of St. Lucie County.
Ten months after the St. Lucie County Commission denied Florida Power & Light an opportunity to build a coal power plant, the Glades County Commission on Tuesday unanimously approved the project.
If the state signs off on the deal, the coal power plant would be the first of its kind in the country, FPL said, because it would use new, more environmentally friendly technology that would emit fewer pollutants......FPL said the plant is needed in a state where almost 1,000 new residents move in every day, and where the cost of natural gas, another source of electricity, continues to rise. The plant would also make service more reliable, FPL officials said.
Florida Power & Light Co. is moving forward with plans to place wind turbines on state land at Blind Creek Park despite one county commissioner coming out against the site and the county attorney advising against it.
County Attorney Dan McIntyre released a memo late Wednesday advising commissioners to not allow FPL to put turbines on the land, which is co-owned by the state Board of Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund (affiliated with the Department of Environmental Protection) and the South Florida Water Management District. The county helped the state buy the land, currently leases it and acts as the land manager.
McIntyre opposed the plan because the county contributed $3.6 million to the state to buy the property, using money from bonds issues approved by voters to buy and protect "environmentally significant lands and wildlife habitat."
FPL Group, whose Florida Power & Light utility is the state’s largest, has expanded by purchasing nuclear plants and building wind farms.
Satterlee said the Hutchinson Island project was put on hold while FPL assessed the wind speeds out west. He said while the large wind turbines on the beach were not supported by the public or county commissioners, no one seemed to have a problem with the more inconspicuous 200-foot wind towers.
FPL Group on Thursday filed a lawsuit against the U.S. government, seeking payment of cleanup costs associated with old munitions at its wind site in Texas. ...While it was in the process of purchasing the property, the Juno Beach-based utility learned it may be contaminated, so it hired TetraTech, an engineering and consulting firm, to evaluate it. While TetraTech was doing this, FPL (NYSE: FPL) leased the property. The suit says FPL could not wait for TetraTech to finish its study to lease Horse Hollow because it would not be complete before the federal deadline to develop clean-energy projects that would be entitled to receive production tax credits.
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Florida Power & Light Co. wants to put some of its proposed windmills on beach property owned by St. Lucie County as well as on company-owned land near the nuclear power plant on South Hutchinson Island, a company official said Wednesday.
FPL has asked the county for permission to build 200-foot meteorological towers to gather wind data in western St. Lucie County. The data would determine whether there's enough wind to build turbines out west.
But what if you're an electric company and you need to get more mileage out of your power plants because you can't build the new coal plant you were counting on?
For Florida Power & Light Co., the state's largest utility, that's the multibillion-dollar question: How to keep the juice flowing to what in a few years will be a customer base of 10 million people - 10 million people who run the air conditioner almost all year long and who are attached to all sorts of electronic gadgets......Attractive as renewables might be, they've got a long way to go to make up a substantial part of FPL's energy supply.
For instance, the company would need 8,000 wind turbines or 20 square miles of solar photovoltaic panels to equal the amount of power that would have been generated by the proposed Glades County coal plant.
"Ultimately, it's a small amount of generation," said Bedley of Apex Power.
FPL is seeking an amendment to the county's land development code that would allow it to build temporary towers not to exceed 200 feet tall to collect wind data, ultimately to determine whether wind turbines would be viable sources of renewable energy in the county's AG-5 zoning district.
John Brooks fought hard to keep parts of Hutchinson Island in its natural state, free of golf courses and condos, his daughter says.
Now Dickie Brooks worries a proposal to place wind turbines on the island in public parks — one named for her father — could go against the spirit of his conservation efforts.
"My concern is that various people, my father included, have managed to purchase and preserve a very limited number of miles of Florida beach in its natural state for public use," Dickie Brooks said. "I really am opposed to any use of those beach properties which doesn't directly benefit the public's enjoyment of the quintessential Florida beach experience."
Gov. Charlie Crist's push to be green could mean more nuclear plants in Florida.
The word "nuclear" does not appear in any of the three executive orders Crist signed at the close of his global warming summit Friday ordering tighter vehicle emission standards and a reduction of greenhouse gases.
But he, as well as power utilities, are planning for more nuclear energy in the future. And the sweeping greenhouse gas reductions Crist embraced this week may solidify more nuclear power as a cornerstone of Florida's energy policy.
Santa Rosa County is partnering with Gulf Power to place a wind meteorological station at the far east end of Navarre Beach in the new county park to measure wind velocity.
"We know we have minimal wind here," county commissioner Gordon Goodin said. "But we won't know if we have enough to try to use wind turbines out there to save taxpayer costs in the future with Gulf Power until we get some measurements.
It's yet another economic indicator - as if Florida's tepid economy needs one.
Customer growth at the state's largest utility, Florida Power & Light Co., has dropped 79 percent during the past year.
And an increasing percentage of existing FPL customers are using extremely low amounts of electricity - a sign that more homes are sitting empty across the state, executives say.
Some call it a carbon-free alternative to fossil fuels, but others point to significant environmental costs.
In Kansas, where winds blow strong, the push for clean energy includes not only new wind turbines but also new nuclear-power plants as part of a "carbon-free" solution to climate change.
It's an idea that may be catching on. At least 11 new nuclear plants are in the design stage in nine states, including Virginia, Texas, and Florida, according to the Nuclear Energy Institute website.
But that carbon-free pitch has researchers asking anew: How carbon-free is nuclear power? And how cost-effective is it in the fight to slow global warming?
"Saying nuclear is carbon-free is not true," says Uwe Fritsche, a researcher at the Öko Institut in Darmstadt, Germany, who has conducted a life-cycle analysis of the plants. "It's less carbon-intensive than fossil fuel. But if you are honest, scientifically speaking, the truth is: There is no carbon-free energy. There's no free lunch."
The Treasure Coast chapter of the Surfrider Foundation has gathered more than 1,000 signatures against Florida Power & Light Co.'s wind turbine project on Hutchinson Island, the group announced late Wednesday.
FPL wants to place six wind turbines on property it owns near the St. Lucie Nuclear Plant, including three at Walton Rocks beach ...The Surfrider Foundation says it has collected more than 1,000 signatures since early May, about 120 of them through an online petition the group launched June 3. The organization says it created the petition following a meeting it had with FPL officials about the project.
The biggest cuts will come in Fort Madison, where 407 workers at a wind turbine blade factory will be out of work. About 220 workers there will be retained.
The company blamed difficult market conditions due to lack of congressional action on a wind energy tax credit as well as increased use of natural gas-fired power plants and an overall sluggish economy.