Solar is key part of renewable energy resources
In what the company said will be the largest system of its type in the world, Florida Power & Light on Thursday announced plans to build a battery facility in Manatee County that will store solar-generated energy.
The facility, which is expected to start operating in late 2021, will be charged by an already-existing FPL solar plant in Manatee County.
FPL said using stored energy from the battery facility during times of high electricity demand will offset the need to run other power plants.
The utility said the facility also will help speed up the shutdown of two 1970s-era natural-gas plants nearby.
In a prepared statement, FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy described the facility as a “mega battery.”
“This is a monumental milestone in realizing the full benefits of solar power and yet another example of how FPL is working hard to position Florida as the global gold standard for clean energy,” Silagy said.
“FPL is pioneering a clean energy revolution for our state that’s come full circle for our community,” Stephen Jonsson, chairman of the board of County Commissioners in Manatee County, said in a statement. “It seems like just yesterday that FPL kicked off its massive solar expansion in 2016 by opening a solar power plant in Parrish.
“Fast forward a few years, and our hometown solar power plant is on the verge of powering the world’s largest solar-powered battery system. This modernization plan is truly an incredible feat and consistent with our commitment as leaders to keep sustainability at the forefront of every project that takes place in Manatee County. It’s why we continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with FPL to help do our part to shape Florida’s clean energy future.”