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FPL Selects Black & Veatch and Blattner Energy to Build New Solar Energy Centers in Florida

March 16, 2017
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Florida Power & Light Company recently announced that it has selected Blattner Energy and Black & Veatch - two leading providers of renewable energy engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services - to build its new universal solar projects.

Blattner Energy will be the EPC contractor for four 74.5-MW solar power plants targeted for Dec. 31, 2017, completion: FPL Coral Farms Solar Energy Center, Putnam County; FPL Horizon Solar Energy Center, Alachua and Putnam Counties; FPL Indian River Solar Energy Center, Indian River County; and FPL Wildflower Solar Energy Center, DeSoto County.

Black & Veatch will be the EPC contractor for four 74.5-MW solar power plants targeted for March 1, 2018, completion: FPL Barefoot Bay Solar Energy Center, Brevard County; FPL Blue Cypress Solar Energy Center, Indian River County; FPL Hammock Solar Energy Center, Hendry County; and FPL Loggerhead Solar Energy Center, St. Lucie County. Construction on these sites will be performed by Overland Contracting Inc., a Black & Veatch company.

Notably, the average estimated capital cost across the eight new plants is less than $1,500/kWac - among the lowest-cost solar ever built in America. Over their operational lifetime, the plants are projected to produce millions of dollars in net savings for FPL customers, due primarily to the projected reduction in the use of fossil fuels more than offsetting the cost to build the plants.

Black & Veatch previously served as the EPC contractor for the three 74.5-MW FPL solar plants that were recently completed in 2016.

"Black & Veatch is thrilled to build on the success of the 2016 FPL solar projects in support of FPL's vision to provide its customers with affordable, clean and sustainable energy for generations to come," said Troy Ochoa, Project Manager, Black & Veatch. "These new solar facilities build on our vast experience in the expanding renewable energy markets across the U.S. and globally."

"Blattner Energy is honored to work with FPL, a clean energy company, and feels as though it's a great fit for both companies," said Stephen Jones, director at Blattner Energy. "With over 32,500 MW of renewable energy installed throughout the United States and Canada, including over 1,400 MW of solar in 2016, we're excited to contribute to the great opportunity Florida has for solar energy."

Construction is expected to commence this spring. At the height of construction, each of the sites is expected to employ about 200 people, for a total of approximately 1,600 jobs.

FPL's universal solar energy centers provide zero-emissions power to the grid and are designed to avoid wetlands and minimize any impact on natural surroundings. The panels sit low to the ground, at about 6 to 8 feet high, on racks that fit directly into the soil and do not require any concrete. Once construction is complete, the plants operate without water, fuel or on-site personnel, placing little to no demand on public services.

When completed, the new plants combined are expected to generate enough energy to power approximately 120,000 homes and prevent an average of more than 525,000 tons of carbon emissions annually. This level of greenhouse gas reduction is equivalent to the emissions from more than 100,000 vehicles or the carbon sequestered by more than 450,000 acres of forest, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

FPL has been working closely with community leaders, local residents and environmental experts to identify and prepare each of the sites to host the new solar installations, and the company has received widespread support for the investment, which will total approximately $900 million in new solar for Florida.

Source: Florida Power & Light Company

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