Company is not making timely progress on clean-up at Turkey Point; while FPL shareholders reap millions in profits from FPL customers
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) today, in closing out this year’s environmental cost recovery docket, unanimously approved FPL’s request for continued rate recovery from its customers through 2019 to clean up the environmental mess at its Turkey Point plant – the recovery includes millions of dollars in profits for FPL shareholders. Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE) pointed out at the recently completed environmental cost recovery hearing that, more than two years later, FPL has not yet complied with environmental clean-up requirements placed on it by Miami-Dade County regulators. Though FPL signed a Consent Agreement Addendum with the County, the utility is not making timely progress in dealing with ammonia pollution around the plant.
FPL’s leaking cooling canal system at its Turkey Point plant has been polluting and harming adjacent ground and surface waters for decades, including Biscayne Bay. FPL negligently failed to take action to address the pollution. It violated its federal discharge permit and state and local water quality laws. Yet, last year, the PSC approved its request to have its customers pay for the clean-up – at a cost of over $200 million over 10 years.
During this year’s proceeding, the financial burden placed on customers became clear: from 2017 to 2019, customers will have paid over $70 million in costs and customers will pay a ‘revenue requirement’ of over $14 million during that time frame – a majority of which is profit to FPL shareholders.
In light of the PSC’s continued approval of rate recovery for FPL from its customers to clean up an environmental mess caused by FPL’s antiquated unlined leaking cooling canal system, George Cavros, SACE’s Florida Energy Policy Attorney, provided the following statement.
“It is obscene that FPL customer are being forced to pay for decades of negligence by FPL in the operation of its aging cooling canal system at Turkey Point, and that FPL shareholders are making millions of dollars of profit in the process. To make matters worse, the Company is not making timely progress on its environmental clean-up requirements. Clearly, families and businesses served by FPL, and clean water, continue to take it on the chin. It’s time for FPL to stop embracing its obsolete cooling canal system and modernize its plant with current technology, like cooling towers.”
Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization, founded in 1985, that promotes responsible energy choices to ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at www.cleanenergy.org.