Make us your home page
Instagram

Tampa Electric can charge customers premium prices for solar energy, PSC votes

TALLAHASSEE — The Public Service Commission voted 4-1 Tuesday to allow Tampa Electric to purchase solar energy from a West Palm Beach-based company in 2011 and charge its customers premium prices for it.

The agreement allows Energy 5.0 to build a 25 megawatt plant next year and sell its electricity exclusively to TECO for a fixed price over the next 25 years.

TECO will be allowed to charge its customers an estimated 52 cents a month beginning in 2011 to pay for the solar power,. The cost to customers would drop to 19 cents a month in 2035, and could be lowered even more if state and federal governments establish renewable energy credits that utility companies can receive.

The $130 million solar photovoltaic electric plant, called Florida Solar I, will serve 3,400 homes in TECO's service area at an undisclosed cost per kilowatt hour. The company argues that it will be slightly less expensive to operate than Florida Power & Light's new DeSoto County solar plant, which opened in October as the nation's largest project of its kind.

Commissioner Nathan Skop was the only vote against the decision because he thought the negotiated contract price was overpaid. "I feel the ratepayers are overpaying. It's not because I do not support renewables," he said.

The staff had urged the commission to accept the application without allowing customers to be charged the full cost of the solar-powered electricity, only a portion of it. TECO said that would kill the project.

Commissioners Matthew Carter, Nancy Argenziano and David Klement said they approved the project to jump-start the renewable energy market in Florida.

Tampa Electric can charge customers premium prices for solar energy, PSC votes 12/15/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, December 16, 2009 6:36pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Trigaux: No more VinikVille as Water Street Tampa finally arrives

    Business

    Adios, VinikVille! Hello Water Street Tampa.

    An aerial rendering of the $3 billion redevelopment project that Jeff Vinik and Strategic Property Partners plan on 50-plus acres around Amalie Arena.
[Rendering courtesy of Strategic Property Partners]

  2. Unlicensed contractor accused of faking death triggers policy change at Pinellas construction licensing board

    Local Government

    The unlicensed contractor accused of faking his death to avoid angry homeowners has triggered an immediate change in policy at the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board.

    Last year Glenn and Judith Holland said they paid a contractor thousands of dollars to renovate their future retirement home in Seminole. But when they tried to move in on Dec. 14, they said the home was in shambles and uninhabitable. They sent a text message to contractor Marc Anthony Perez at 12:36 p.m. looking for answers. Fourteen minutes later, they got back this text: "This is Marc's daughter, dad passed away on the 7th of December in a car accident. Sorry." Turns out Perez was still alive. Now the Hollands are suing him in Pinellas-Pasco circuit court. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]
  3. SeaWorld shares drop Monday to 2017 low after disclosure of federal subpoena

    Tourism

    The Orlando parent company of SeaWorld and Busch Gardens theme parks saw its stock drop 3.5 percent Monday to $15.10, its lowest price of this year.

    Killer whales perform at Shamu Stadium at SeaWorld in Orlando in 2011, before public pressure was placed on the theme park company to curtail its orca shows.SeaWorld has since announced an end to the traditional killer whale entertainment  at its theme parks. [AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack]
  4. Rick Scott appoints longtime ally Jimmy Patronis as Florida CFO

    State Roundup
    Rick Scott appoints Jimmy Patronis (background) as CFO. [STEVE BOUSQUET | Tampa Bay Times]
  5. Local gas prices plummet as Fourth of July holiday travel approaches

    Tourism

    TAMPA — Local gas prices are enjoying an unseasonal dip around the $2 mark just in time for the hectic Fourth of July holiday travel weekend.

    The price of regular unleaded gasoline has dropped to $1.99 at a Rally station on Pasadena Ave. South and Gulfport Boulevard South, South Pasadena.
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]