Regulators Approve Tampa Electric's Third Phase of Solar Projects
Tampa Electric will remain Florida’s solar energy leader
TAMPA, October 17, 2019
The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) today approved the cost-effectiveness of Tampa Electric’s current phase of solar development, for two projects coming online in January.
This approval is for the third of four phases of solar expansion, and it includes Little Manatee River and Wimauma solar projects, which total 149 MW and are currently under construction. Tampa Electric’s first two phases of solar construction – seven projects totaling 405 megawatts (MW) – came online in 2018 and in early 2019 and were previously approved by the PSC. The final phase is scheduled to be complete in January 2021.
“This solar expansion is a win for our customers and a win for the environment,” said Nancy Tower, president and chief executive officer of the Tampa-based utility. “This is safe, renewable energy that benefits all Tampa Electric customers today and for future generations.”
Tampa Electric’s residential bills are among the lowest in Florida and are expected to remain so in 2020; the solar projects’ impact on customers’ bills in January will be more than offset by reductions in fuel costs due to the solar generation and low natural gas prices (if regulators approve our request as filed).
By 2021, Tampa Electric will invest $850 million to add 6 million solar panels in 10 new photovoltaic solar projects. In total, Tampa Electric will install 600 MW of photovoltaic solar energy to its fleet, which is enough electricity to power more than 100,000 homes. When complete, about 7 percent of Tampa Electric's energy generation will come from the sun – a higher percentage of solar than any other Florida utility.
Tampa Electric, one of Florida’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serves about 765,000 customers in West Central Florida. Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.