FPL Group Inc., the largest U.S. producer of wind power, said second-quarter profits fell 48 percent on a drop in the valuation of energy contracts. Its net income declined to $209 million, or 52 cents a share, from $405 million, or $1.01, a year earlier. Revenue fell 8.8 percent to $3.59 billion. FPL Energy, the alternative energy arm of the company, reported a decrease in net income of 98.5 percent to $3 million in the second quarter from $203 million last year. The net income of Florida Power & Light Co., which provides electricity for 4.5 million customers in Florida, increased by 2.8 percent to $217 million from $211 million.
Articles filed under Technology from Florida
The Florida Public Service Commission demands that electrical utilities provide reliable power at reasonable rates. Despite this mandate, Gov. Charlie Crist signed a series of executive orders requiring utility companies to begin work by Sept. 1 towards generating at least 20 percent of their electricity from renewable sources with an emphasis on solar and wind energy. Although well-intentioned, these executive orders were apparently signed without considering that Florida does not have high-intensity sunlight as found in low-humidity deserts and lacks sufficient wind energy to make wind turbines feasible.
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."
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.