SACE | Southern Alliance for Clean Energy
FPL Asks Regulators for Less Accountability but More Customer Dollars for Increasingly Speculative, Expensive New Reactors at Turkey Point
Contact: Jennifer Rennicks, SACE, email@example.com, 865-235-1448
Miami, Fla. (May 16, 2016) – Today the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) filed comments opposing FPL’s outrageous request to the Florida Public Service Commission to be relieved of its responsibility to prove to the Commission and its customers that the proposed new nuclear reactors at the Turkey Point facility, with a cost estimate of well over $20 billion, are economically feasible. Since 2008, all power companies, including FPL, that seek to recover costs from their customers in advance for new nuclear power generation projects have been required to submit a feasibility study to the Commission to prove that continued investment in the reactors is a good deal for customers. This requirement is especially important as the controversial 2006 early cost recovery law shifted all the financial risk of construction activities on to customers.
FPL is currently embroiled in a controversy over its two existing reactors at the Turkey Point plant near Homestead, as it was slow to act to address the plant’s continuing contamination of drinking water resources and Biscayne National Park. Additionally, the company is seeking to pass on a 24 percent base rate increase to customers – that includes an increased profit for FPL shareholders. FPL had a 2015 net income of $1.65 billion.
As part of its nuclear cost recovery clause filings to the Commission on April 27, 2016, FPL asks that the requirement for a feasibility study be waived while it pursues obtaining needed licenses for the proposed reactors because it “violates the principles of fairness” and imposes a “substantial hardship” on the company.
SACE is a party in the 2016 nuclear cost recovery clause docket, in which FPL is asking for an additional $22 million. Since 2008, FPL customers have been charged over $280 million. In response to FPL’s request to be let off the hook on providing critical feasibility information to the Commission while it pursues its licenses, SACE’s Florida Energy Policy Attorney George Cavros issued this statement:
“It’s ironic to see a monopoly utility with a net income of $1.65 billion last year arguing for less accountability under ‘principles of fairness’ as it continues to demand customer dollars for speculative reactor projects it has not committed to build. Where are the principles of fairness for its customers? Hundreds of millions of dollars have already been collected from FPL’s customers for reactors that will likely never be built. The Commission should protect FPL customers by denying the Company’s shameful request.“
Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices that work to address the impacts of global climate change and ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at www.cleanenergy.org