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Industry News

Duke Energy Florida Files Settlement Agreement to Add 700 MW of Solar and End Effort to Build Levy Nuclear Project

LCG, August 31, 2017--Duke Energy Florida filed a revised settlement agreement with the Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) on Tuesday that includes a range of investments, including 700 MW in new solar power facilities over the next four years, installing over 500 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, and developing a battery storage pilot program that includes up to 50 MW of capacity. The company also agrees to no longer proceed with building the Levy Nuclear Project, and customers will not pay any further costs associated with the project.

The settlement agreement was developed with representatives of all consumer groups, including the state's Office of Public Counsel, the Florida Industrial Power Users Group, the Florida Retail Federation, White Springs Agricultural Chemicals, Inc. d/b/a PCS Phosphate and the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.

Duke Energy state president - Florida stated, "This settlement allows us to move forward to create a smarter energy future for our customers and communities. It resolves the future of the Levy Nuclear Project and reinforces our commitment to building cost-effective solar in Florida. It also makes smart investments that will offer customers more information, choices and control of their energy needs while also providing greater reliability."

"We applaud Duke Energy Florida for working proactively with stakeholders to embrace smart technologies that are both good for consumers and the environment," said the executive director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. "Large scale solar, electric vehicles and battery storage demonstrate that Duke is embracing technologies for the 21st century. We welcome Duke's willingness to work with stakeholders on data collection and any rate design changes impacting customer- owned demand side solar."

Duke Energy Florida has requested the FPSC to hold a hearing, and the company expects to have a decision by December 2017. The agreement will take effect in January 2018 and will include investments of nearly $6 billion over the next four years. In early 2018, Duke Energy Florida also plans to commence construction of the 74.9-MW Hamilton Solar Plant, which is one step toward adding 700 MW of new solar electric generating capacity.

Other key investments in the revised settlement agreement to modernize the energy grid to enhance reliability, shorten restoration times and support the growth of emerging technologies include the installation of advanced metering technology (smart meters) to enable more bill-lowering tools, access to more information about energy use, and the ability to receive usage alerts, outage notifications and customized billing options once fully implemented.

The agreement includes a reduction of $2.50 per 1,000 kWh for residential customers through the removal of unrecovered Levy Nuclear Project costs.

Duke Energy Florida submitted its application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for combined licenses (COLs) for two Westinghouse Advanced Passive 1000 (AP1000) Pressurized Water Reactors (PWRs) on July 30, 2008. The NRC issued the COLs in October of 2016.
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