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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — Florida Power and Light is announcing details on its plan to make Florida a global leader in solar power.
FPL says it is planning to install 30 million solar panels across the state by the end of the next decade. Laid end-to-end, the 30 million solar panels would wrap around the Earth one and a half times.
It would be the largest installation of solar panels by a regulated utility in the world and provide a 67-percent fleet-wide reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions rates by 2030 as compared to the national average, according to FPL.
FPL is the Sunshine State’s largest solar producer, generating ten times as much solar power in 2018 than it did in 2016.
FPL and its sister company, NextEra Energy Resources, are already the world’s largest producer of renewable energy from the wind and sun and, when this plan is completed, FPL expects to be the largest utility owner and operator of solar in America.
“FPL is not your traditional electric company,” said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL. “We’re a technology company that delivers power, and we’ve long believed in making smart, forward-thinking infrastructure investments to produce tangible, long-term benefits – cleaner air, lower electric rates and reliable service – for our customers and our state. Now we’re taking our long-standing clean energy commitment to the next level. Bottom line, this bold, innovative plan is the right thing to do for our customers and for our fast-growing state and we look forward to working with local and state officials and our regulators to make this vision a reality.”
“I am supportive of programs that will provide Floridians with greater access to affordable, clean energy which will help propel the State to a healthier future,” said Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. “We live in the Sunshine State and solar energy is a natural resource that should be seriously considered. FPL’s initiative is important. As Florida’s energy needs continue to grow at a rapid pace, it is important that we diversify our energy resources. This is vital to the economic well-being of our State and quality of life for residents.”
FPL has studied solar technology for decades and already operates 18 large solar power plants and hundreds of other universal solar installations across Florida.
FPL’s first solar power plant in Miami-Dade County is scheduled to come online early this year.