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article imageDuke Energy goes solar and drops plan for Florida nuclear plant

By Karen Graham     Aug 30, 2017 in Technology
Duke Energy Florida's settlement over plans to scrap the proposed Levy nuclear plant will instead bring PV batteries, EV charging, smart meters and grid modernization to customers, the company announced on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, Duke Energy Florida filed a revised settlement agreement with the Florida Public Service Commission (FPSC) that paves the way to a smarter energy future for Florida customers.
One big plus to come out of the settlement is that Florida customers will no longer be charged for the Levy Nuclear Power project. Instead, Duke plans to add 700 megawatts (MW) of solar energy, including its next 74.9-MW universal solar power plant in Hamilton County.
And the 8.3 percent rate hike Duke was asking for last week? The new plan will keep rates in line with inflation for the next four years. It seems to be a good plan, and well thought out. Duke Energy's decision to scrap the plans for the Levy Nuclear project was necessitated by the bankruptcy of Westinghouse earlier this year, as well as the overall disruption of the energy sector.
A former Westinghouse plant in Muncie  Indiana  being converted to locomotive production by Progress...
A former Westinghouse plant in Muncie, Indiana, being converted to locomotive production by Progress Rail. Credit: Indiana Railroads Bull Session.
Indiana Railroads Bull Session
Pittsburgh-based Westinghouse doesn't just build nuclear power plants. The company was also a supplier of reactors for nuclear-powered U.S. aircraft carriers, submarines and other warships. There was considerable concern over Westinghouse being bought up by a foreign power at the time.
Duke Energy Florida owns close to 8,800 megawatts of generation capacity and serves approximately 1.8 million customers. The energy giant will absorb about $150 million in closing costs on the deal while passing on a charge of $2.53 per megawatt-hour to its customers.
Toshiba’s SCiBTM is a highly innovative lithium-ion secondary battery  and is effective for  ironi...
Toshiba’s SCiBTM is a highly innovative lithium-ion secondary battery, and is effective for ironing out frequency fluctuations and supporting stable power networks, and has supplied systems for projects in Japan and around the world.
Toshiba
Dukes plans include research and development of large batteries for solar energy storage, smart meters for all customers deployed through 2020, 500 charging stations for electric cars, as well as improved cyber security and grid technology. Florida president of Duke Energy, Harry Sideris said, “This was a very collaborate process. This is the first time we have had environmental groups involved and collaborating with us.”
Sideris said the company's first solar plant will be erected next year on a 550-acre tract in Hamilton County, which straddles Interstate 75 at the Georgia state line. It is just one of the nine or ten solar plants in the works. Sideris didn't go into detail about negotiations for other sites, only saying, “We are looking for dry land, flat land, and land that’s close to our system.”
More about Duke energy, Levy power plant, Westinghouse bankruptcy, Solar, grid upgrades
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