Florida lives up to its Sunshine State moniker, especially one county, thanks to Florida Power and Light, a NextEra Energy company.
DeSoto County has its fifth solar energy field in the Rodeo Solar Energy Center. The Center has about 300,000 solar panels and brings an additional 74.5 megawatts of power to the grid. It is on land that FPL bought in the 1960s.
The new facility comes 12 years after the utility company launched its solar investments in Florida with the FPL DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center. (Image right)
“FPL has been a wonderful friend to this community, and it’s been a thrill to watch their clean energy transformation unfold right before our eyes in DeSoto County,” said DeSoto County Commissioner J.C. Deriso. (Source)
The site is about more than just making power. “It’s also a hub for clean energy innovation. Every time FPL has decided to disrupt the status quo, push the limits or test new ideas, DeSoto County has shown up as an eager partner,” said FPL President and CEO Eric Silagy. (Source)
FPL has a rich history of renewables. In 2016, FPL built three solar energy centers in Florida, one was the FPL Citrus Solar Energy Center, on the same site as the DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center. Each of produces 74.5 megawatts.
FPL built its Wildflower and Cattle Ranch solar energy centers in 2018 and 2020 respectively, making DeSoto County home to a total of four solar energy centers at the time.
The lesson: Smart policymaking and smart companies create benefits for all stakeholders.