26 September 2007 — FPL Group, Inc. announced a $2.4 billion investment program aimed at increasing U.S. solar thermal energy output. The planned investment includes up to $1.5 billion in new solar thermal generating facilities in Florida and California over the next seven years, starting with a project at Florida Power & Light. It also includes up to $500 million by FPL to create a smart network that will provide its customers with enhanced energy management capabilities.
The planned investments are in addition to the company’s intention to spend $20 billion in new wind generation.
As part of the investment, FPL plans to build 300 MW of solar generating capacity in Florida using Ausra, Inc.’s solar thermal technology. As a first step, FPL expects to construct a 10 MW project. Subject to Ausra meeting agreed-upon cost and technical specifications, as well as FPL gaining regulatory and related approvals, the utility will expand the project to a 300 MW facility.
In a second initiative, FPL said it plans to invest up to $500 million to install a smart network utilizing state-of-the-art technology in the 35 Florida counties it serves. This new program will allow customers to view their energy consumption online every day.