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Duke Energy Florida Announces Installation of One-Millionth Solar Panel in State

published: 2020-02-26 18:00

One million solar panels and counting! Duke Energy has nearly 515 megawatts of solar under construction or operating in Florida. By mid-2020, company's Florida solar power plants will eliminate more than 1.5 billion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions each year

Image by skeeze from Pixabay

St. Petersburg, Florida, Feb 24, 2020, 13:56 ET

Duke Energy Florida plans to install a significant amount of additional solar energy over the next 10 years across the state.

"This is an exciting announcement as we increasingly deliver cleaner, more reliable energy to our customers," said Catherine Stempien, Duke Energy Florida state president. "By mid-year, our solar plants are expected to eliminate nearly 1.5 billion pounds of carbon dioxide emissions each year. That's the equivalent of taking 130,000 passenger cars off Florida roads."

Duke Energy Florida will have a total of almost 515 megawatts (MW) of solar under construction or operating by mid-2020.

The company is investing an estimated $1 billion to construct or acquire a total of 700 MW of solar power facilities from 2018 through 2022 in Florida.

Duke Energy Florida is projecting to more than double its solar investments, and plans to potentially install more than 1,500 MW of solar generation by 2028.

Building A Smarter Energy Future®

Here is a look at the solar power plants across Florida that helped Duke Energy reach its one-millionth solar panel installation.

  • In 2016, Duke Energy completed a 5-MW solar power plant that serves the Reedy Creek Improvement District and its customers, like the Walt Disney World Resort. It is a 22-acre solar farm in the shape of a not-so-hidden Mickey in OrlandoOrange County, with 48,000 solar panels. 
  • Also in 2016, Duke Energy Florida opened two universal solar power plants. A 3.8-MW facility in KenansvilleOsceola County,  with 15,000 solar panels and a 5.1-MW facility in PerryTaylor County, with 22,000 solar panels.
  • In 2017, Duke Energy Florida opened a solar power plant in Suwannee County with 8.8 MW and 44,000 panels in Live OakSuwannee County
  • The 74.9-MW Hamilton Solar Power Plant has 300,000 solar panels and came online in December 2018. It is located in JasperHamilton County
  • The 45-MW Lake Placid Solar Power Plant in Highlands County began serving customers Dec. 9, 2019, with 180,000 solar panels. 
  • The Trenton Solar Power Plant in Gilchrist County began serving customers Dec. 18, 2019. The facility is 74.9 MW and has 280,000 solar panels. 
  • The one-millionth panel was installed at the 74.9-MW Columbia Solar Power Plant, which includes approximately 300,000 solar panels and is anticipated to begin servicing customers in March 2020.

Florida's Solar Future

Additional solar power plants are under way in Florida.

The 74.5 MW DeBary Solar Power Plant is under construction in Volusia County and will have  300,000 solar panels, with universal service to the power grid in the second quarter of 2020.  

The Twin Rivers Solar Power Plant will be built on 460 acres in Hamilton County. Once operational, the 74.9-MW facility will consist of approximately 235,000 tracking solar panels that track the movement of the sun and are capable of producing enough electricity to power approximately 23,000 homes at peak production.

The Santa Fe Solar Power Plant will be built on approximately 600 acres in Columbia County. The 74.9-MW plant will consist of approximately 235,000 tracking solar panels, which will produce enough carbon-free energy to power more than 23,000 average homes at peak production.

Over the next decade, the company will continue to make innovative and targeted investments in additional solar power plants, battery storage technology, shared solar, transportation electrification and a modernized power grid to help meet customers' needs for diverse, reliable energy solutions.

Duke Energy Florida

Duke Energy Florida, a subsidiary of Duke Energy, owns a diverse generation mix of natural gas, coal and renewables, providing about 10,200 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 1.8 million customers in a 13,000-square-mile service area.

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S. It employs 30,000 people and has an electric generating capacity of 51,000 megawatts through its regulated utilities, and 3,000 megawatts through its nonregulated Duke Energy Renewables unit.

Duke Energy is transforming its customers' experience, modernizing the energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves. The Electric Utilities and Infrastructure unit's regulated utilities serve approximately 7.7 million retail electric customers in six states – North CarolinaSouth CarolinaFloridaIndianaOhio and Kentucky. The Gas Utilities and Infrastructure unit distributes natural gas to more than 1.6 million customers in five states – North CarolinaSouth CarolinaTennesseeOhio and Kentucky. The Duke Energy Renewables unit operates wind and solar generation facilities across the U.S., as well as energy storage and microgrid projects.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune's 2020 "World's Most Admired Companies" list, and Forbes' 2019 "America's Best Employers" list. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy's illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on TwitterLinkedInInstagram and Facebook.    


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