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KUA and 11 Other Florida Utilities Break Ground on One of the Largest Municipal Solar Projects in the Nation

image credit: Kissimmee Utility Authority

Kissimmee Utility Authority today participated in a groundbreaking event for the Florida Municipal Solar Project, a large-scale solar energy project that will enable KUA to provide renewable energy to its customers, beginning next summer.

One of the largest municipally-backed solar projects in the United States, the Florida Municipal Solar Project is a joint effort between KUA, 11 other Florida municipal electric utilities, the Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA) and Florida Renewable Partners, LLC.

A total of 900,000 solar panels will be installed at two sites in Osceola County and at one site in Orange County -- enough solar panels to fill 900 football fields or stretch from Jacksonville Beach to Key West two and a half times. The total generating capability will be 223.5 megawatts of zero-emissions energy, which is enough to power 45,000 typical Florida homes.

KUA has agreed to purchase 30 megawatts of power from the project.

“Through this partnership, we are able to build a large-scale solar project that lowers the cost of solar power and enables us to offer our customers affordable, emissions-free electricity,” said Brian Horton, KUA president and general manager. “We look forward to the completion of the first phase of this project and adding more renewable energy to our power generation mix.”

Construction on phase one of the project will continue through mid-2020. When complete, the power output from the project will be equal to 37,250 average-size rooftop solar systems.

FMPA is serving as the project coordinator. The builder, owner and operator of the solar farms is Florida Renewable Partners. KUA and the other participating municipal electric utilities will purchase power from the project. There are no up-front costs for the participating municipal electric utilities, and KUA will only pay for the power it purchases.

KUA customers wishing to subscribe to community solar can complete an online application at www.kua.com/solar.

Chris Gent, APR, CPRC's picture

Thank Chris for the Post!

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Discussions

Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Nov 18, 2019 10:38 pm GMT

This is exciting for sure, Chris. Do you have information on what these sites were before they were identified as locations for the solar installations? Were they unused more or less brownfields?

Joe Deely's picture
Joe Deely on Dec 17, 2019 5:15 pm GMT

Good to see more utilities in Florida moving to solar.

Work is underway in the US state of Florida on the construction of an over 223MW municipal solar facility.

Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA), 12 Florida municipal electric utilities and Florida Renewable Partners today broke ground on the Florida Municipal Solar Project, which will comprise approximately 900,000 panels at two sites in Osceola County and at one site in Orange County.

The panels are being installed with a computer-controlled tracking system that tracks the sun as it travels from east to west, maximizing power output.

Construction of phase one will continue until mid-2020. The utilities are looking to grow the project to 375MW by 2023.

Interestingly, the FMPA which co-owns Stanton  - a two unit, 896 W coal plant - along with Orland Utilities Commission (OUC), recently paid of its loan on one of the two units.  This solar project - along with projects being developed by OUC will eat into the amount of generation at Stanton. Expect one of Stanton's units to close by the mid 20s and the other to be closed by 2030.

Joe Deely's picture
Joe Deely on Dec 17, 2019 5:18 pm GMT

That was fast - FMPA just broke ground on Phase 1 of it solar project in November and weeks later it has announced Phase 2.

Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA), in partnership with 12 municipal electric utilities and Origis Energy, today announced plans to expand the Florida Municipal Solar Project by adding 149 megawatts, or 66% more emissions-free energy, to what was already one of the largest municipal-backed solar projects in the nation.

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