FPL withdraws, temporarily, an application for new gas capacity

Saying that time-consuming new air analysis is needed, Florida Power & Light (FPL) on Dec. 4 asked the Florida Public Service Commission to let it totally withdraw its plan to shut gas-fired capacity at three power plants and to add new gas capacity at two of those plants.

FPL asked for voluntary dismissal without prejudice of its June 28 petition for approval of environmental cost recovery for its NO2 Compliance Project. The project was designed to comply with new 1-hour NO2 emissions standards from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP).

The utility had on Nov. 27 asked for only a delay in the PSC hearing schedule under this application for the same reason, then decided to withdraw the application entirely.

Recently, FDEP has advised the utility that additional data is needed to confirm certain exceedances of the 1-hour NO2 standard that are predicted by FPL’s air-dispersion modeling, through a limited period of monitoring actual air quality. Needed new monitoring could extend up to a year, but may be completed in a considerably shorter period of time, the utility noted.

“Thus, FPL is voluntarily withdrawing its Petition, with the intent of refiling an amended petition and supporting testimony once the results of the monitoring are known,” said the Dec. 4 request. “Thereafter, FPL will work with Staff and the parties to propose an appropriate schedule for moving through discovery and the filing of intervenor and rebuttal testimony toward a hearing.”

In view of FPL’s voluntary dismissal without prejudice of the petition, FPL said it would have no objection to the commission’s approving a revised 2014 environmental cost recovery rate factor that does not include project costs, with the understanding that if project costs are ultimately approved for recovery under FPL’s amended petition, it would recover 2013 and 2014 project costs via the after-the-fact true-up process.

FPL had been asking the PSC to let it replace 48 old peaking gas turbines (GTs) in total among three sites: Fort Lauderdale, Port Everglades and Fort Myers. 

  • For Fort Lauderdale, this project would result in the retirement of 24 of its 35-MW GTs with a combined summer peak capacity of 840 MW and installation of five combustion turbines (CTs) with a combined summer rating of 1,005 MW.
  • For Fort Myers, the project would result in the retirement of 12 of its 54-MW GTs with a combined summer rating of 648 MW and installation of three CTs with a combined summer peak capacity of 603 MW.
  • For Port Everglades, the project would result in the retirement of 12 of its 35-MW GTs with a combined summer rating of 420 MW, with no capacity added at this site.
About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.