FPL receives approval for three solar energy centers

Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), a subsidiary of FPL Group, Inc, has received approval from the Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) to begin construction of three solar energy centers.

Significantly, the development will make Florida the second largest supplier of utility-generated solar power in the nation.

"At a time of record-setting fossil fuel prices and concern over global climate change, solar power helps to meet the goals of protecting the environment and enhancing Florida's energy security. Governor Crist and the state legislature set a goal of increasing renewable energy in Florida, and as a clean energy company we are committed to playing a meaningful role in this endeavor," said FPL President Armando J. Olivera.

The three projects are:

- The DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center. Planned for construction on FPL-owned property in DeSoto County, Fla., the DeSoto project will provide 25 megawatts of photovoltaic solar capacity, making it the world' largest photovoltaic solar facility. DeSoto is expected to be in service by December 2009.

- The Martin Next Generation Solar Energy Center. Planned for construction at FPL' existing Martin Plant site, the Martin project will provide up to 75 megawatts of solar thermal capacity in an innovative "hybrid" design that will connect to an existing combined-cycle power plant. It is the world's first project to integrate solar thermal steam generation into a combined-cycle steam turbine. When the power of the sun is being harnessed to produce electricity from steam, less natural gas is required. The Martin facility is expected to be on-line at the end of 2009 and completed by 2010.

- The Space Coast Next Generation Solar Energy Center. Planned for construction at the Kennedy Space Center, the Space Coast project will provide 10 megawatts of photovoltaic solar capacity in an innovative public-private partnership. Space Coast Solar will be operating by the first quarter of 2010.