NextEra Energy utility Florida Power & Light demolishes stacks, boilers at power plant in Riviera Beach, Florida, to make way for construction of 1,250-MW natural gas power plant, scheduled to open in 2014; FPL investing more than US$1B in project
RIVIERA BEACH, Florida
June 20, 2011
– New clean, natural gas-fired energy center expected to save FPL customers hundreds of millions of dollars over its operational lifetime
After serving Floridians for almost half a century, the twin red-and-white-striped, 300-foot-tall stacks and 7,500-ton boilers at Florida Power & Light Company’s power plant in Riviera Beach were taken down today in preparation for the construction of FPL’s Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center.
Scheduled to open in 2014, the new, state-of-the-art power plant will use high-efficiency, combined-cycle natural gas technology to produce up to 1,250 megawatts of electricity, or enough power for approximately 250,000 of FPL’s 4.5 million customers.
FPL is investing more than $1 billion to build the new facility, which will generate power with 33 percent less fuel per megawatt-hour and far fewer emissions than the former plant. Over its 30-year operational lifetime, FPL’s Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center is expected to produce net savings of hundreds of millions of dollars for FPL customers.
“This important investment will benefit our customers for decades to come with significant improvements in efficiency, environmental performance and reliability,” said FPL President and CEO Armando J. Olivera. “Making smart infrastructure investments on behalf of our customers is part of FPL’s commitment to maintaining strong service reliability, generating cleaner power and keeping our customers’ bills lower over the long-term.”
FPL’s Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center will feature three sleeker stacks, about half as high as those taken down today in a controlled demolition. Watch the iconic stacks be reduced to rubble at www.youtube.com/FPL. An artistic rendering of FPL’s Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center is available at www.FPL.com/rbec.
By modernizing this plant with the latest technology, FPL’s environmental profile – already among the best in the United States – will improve. Compared to the former plant, the new plant will cut the carbon dioxide emissions rate in half and generate power with more than 90 percent fewer air emissions without using any additional water or land.
“FPL is continuing its strong commitment to clean power generation and the environment by constructing this new energy center,” said Dr. James “Buddy” Powell, executive director of the Sea to Shore Alliance. “It is also great to see that FPL has taken extra effort to ensure that the warm waters near the site will continue to provide a safe habitat for the endangered Florida manatee.”
For decades, the warm waters near the site have served as a safe haven for the endangered Florida manatee during the winter. The new energy center will feature an observation area to allow the public to view the manatees free of charge.
FPL’s investment will also produce direct and indirect economic benefits for the surrounding area. Construction of the plant will create an estimated 650 direct jobs at peak construction and support numerous local businesses. FPL’s construction contractor, Zachry Industrial, tries to use local labor and other resources when practical and cost effective. And in the plant’s first full year of operation, it is expected to deliver $7 million to $9 million in new tax revenue for the City of Riviera Beach and over $20 million in new tax revenues in total.
In addition, the plant’s administration building will be built to meet the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification and will feature rooftop solar panels and an electric car recharging station.
FPL is also modernizing a 1960s-era site near Kennedy Space Center, Fla. Construction on FPL’s Cape Canaveral Next Generation Clean Energy Center began earlier this year and is scheduled to be completed in 2013. FPL’s combined investment of $2.4 billion in these two new high-efficiency clean energy centers is expected to net the company’s customers an estimated $850 million to $950 million in savings over the two plants’ operational lifetimes.
For more information about the Riviera Beach Next Generation Clean Energy Center, visit www.FPL.com/rbec.
NOTE TO EDITORS: For additional information, b-roll and/or photos, please call the FPL Media Line at 305-552-3888.
Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the largest electric utility in Florida and one of the largest rate-regulated utilities in the United States. FPL serves 4.5 million customer accounts in Florida and is a leading employer in the state with approximately 10,000 employees. The company consistently outperforms national averages for service reliability while customer bills are below the national average. A clean energy leader, FPL has one of the lowest emissions profiles and one of the leading energy efficiency programs among utilities nationwide. FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Fla.-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE). For more information, visit www.FPL.com.