Grid & Clean Energy Investment Spurred By Settlement

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In 2017, the Public Service Commission of Florida approved a settlement agreement that extends Duke Energy's current multiyear rate plan to 2021.

The agreement, supported by a number of consumer groups, included $6 billion in renewable power and energy grid investments. It also would eliminate any further customer charges with the nuclear project in Levy County.

Some highlights:

  • Duke Energy announced a four-year plan to add 700 megawatts (MW) of solar energy, greatly accelerating the company’s previous 10-year solar installation plan. A future 75-MW plant in Hamilton County in north Florida will be one of the first of the new facilities.
  • It expands customer choices with two new optional billing programs. One is a shared solar program to allow customers to participate in solar generation without having the solar facility on their property. The other is a fixed bill program for residential customers – allowing them to pay a fixed amount each month regardless of usage.
  • It allows Duke Energy to invest to modernize the energy grid to enhance reliability, reduce outages and shorten restoration times.
  • The company can install 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 settlement will allow the company to install more than 500 electric vehicle charging stations and up to 50 MW of battery energy storage.

“We applaud Duke Energy Florida for working proactively with stakeholders to embrace smart technologies that are both good for consumers and the environment,” said Dr. Stephen A. Smith, executive director of the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, in the press release announcing the settlement. “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.”