Energy for good.
Clean air is essential, and it's a resource we work hard to preserve. Since 1999, we've committed to a sweeping environmental improvement plan, with a key component of that being to reduce emissions while keeping rates affordable for our customers. We've decreased emissions of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide by more than 90 percent, and carbon dioxide by 50 percent.
We are leveraging the power of technology to find new ways to operate and lessen our footprint. With our focus on growing solar energy production, we're dramatically reducing carbon dioxide emissions. By 2023, that reduction will equate to removing more than 1 million cars from local roadways.
We lead the industry in reuse of coal-combustion byproducts, including fly ash for cement and gypsum for wallboard.
Tampa Electric is the state's top producer of solar energy per customer. We began generating solar energy more than 20 years ago with our first 18,000-watt solar project at MOSI in Tampa. Now, our solar projects power more than 100,000 homes, businesses and even schools with the sun. By 2023, Tampa Electric will have nearly 14 percent of its energy generated from the sun – the highest percentage of solar generation of any utility in the state – enough to power more than 200,000 homes. Our solar fields are manned by a unique landscaping crew – Katahdin sheep! We use local flocks to maintain vegetation throughout the year, keeping lawn maintenance costs low and providing some adorable entertainment for all of us via our famous Lamb Cam via our Facebook page a few months of the year.
Innovative in design, our solar panels rotate throughout the day to follow the sun on its path across the sky for maximum exposure. Should a storm approach, the panels can be adjusted to remain parallel to the ground and avoid damaging high winds.
While our solar investments benefit all customers, we also make it easy for customers wishing to expand their use of solar – connecting their installed panels to our grid or purchasing additional solar energy through our Sun Select and Sun To Go programs.
The nationally certified energy experts at Tampa Electric have been helping customers save energy and money with energy-efficiency programs for more than 40 years.
Tampa Electric offers more energy-efficiency programs than any other electric utility in the state.
The energy-efficiency programs we make available to all our customers offset the need to generate enough electricity to power nearly 12,500 homes in a year.
Our solar fields require minimal water usage, allowing us to conserve water previously allocated for large farming parcels across Florida. As of 2020, Tampa Electric has saved more than 2 billion gallons of water on water permits at our solar facilities, preserving that precious resource.
Living in Florida includes living alongside some incredible wildlife, and we take pride in ensuring their safety and habitats.
We were the first utility in Florida to set up an Avian Protection Plan for migratory birds. This program is designed to prevent large birds of prey from electrocution and collisions with electric infrastructure.
TECO's Big Bend Power Station provides a warm water home for manatees in the winter months. The majestic creatures flock to the canal each winter and make for incredible sights for millions of people at our Manatee Viewing Center, which opened in 1986. Take a look and plan your own visit during manatee season.
Helping the environment doesn't stop at home. We power green-energy solutions on the go by helping our customers to take advantage of innovative technologies like electric vehicles (EVs). By driving an electric vehicle, you can limit dependence on gas, save money and protect the environment. From our own green fleet of Tampa Electric vehicles to providing workplace charging stations, learn more about how we can help you make the switch to an EV.
We're proud to be the first electric utility in the country to offer an innovative energy-education program focused on teaching students about electric vehicle technology, through our partnerships with local high schools and the University of South Florida. Around town, you may see one of the new Tesla Model X all-electric vehicles that we've joined other community partners in funding as part of the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit authority's HyperLINK program.
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