FPL Group Claims Low Emissions Profile for Electric Power
After years of building what has become the largest renewable energy business in the nation, FPL Group, Inc. has established itself as one of the nation's cleanest electric power providers, according to a recent press release.
"In an era when climate change threatens potentially catastrophic consequences for the planet, sustainability confronts corporate America with a simple question: What are you doing to reduce your carbon dioxide emissions? At FPL Group, we have a simple answer: A lot. Through our substantial investments in low-carbon electricity generation, we are now one of the cleanest power companies in the nation," FPL Group Chair and Chief Executive Officer Lew Hay said in the company's Sustainability Report.
Among its accomplishments, FLP Group:
- is the No. 1 producer of wind power and solar power in North America.
- generates more electricity from its wind farms than from its largest nuclear power plant.
- owns the largest wind farm in the world, the 736 megawatt Horse Hollow Wind Energy Center in Texas.
- is building 110 megawatts of solar power in Florida, which will vault the state into second-place nationwide in solar generation.
- operates the largest solar power plants in the world, the 310-megawatt Solar Electric Generating Systems in California's Mojave Desert.
- has a carbon dioxide emissions rate that is half the industry average.
- has the No. 1 demand-side management program in the nation. The company's programs have avoided the need to build 12 power plants, more than any other utility.
More than 90 percent of the electricity the company generates is from clean natural gas and emissions-free nuclear, wind and solar; only 8 percent comes from oil and coal. All told, FPL Group's zero-emissions generation avoided 42.6 million tons of carbon dioxide in 2008. According to the report, since 1995, FPL Group's power generation has increased by 123 percent while its sulfur dioxide emissions rate declined by 84 percent and its nitrogen oxide emissions rate fell by 79 percent.
FPL Group believes that a strong commitment to environmental sustainability has helped the company to achieve economic sustainability as well. The $18 billion that FPL Group has invested in clean-energy infrastructure over the past five years has created 60,000 direct and indirect jobs, generating roughly $30 billion in economic impact for the U.S. economy.
"At FPL Group, we see the various elements of sustainability as a seamless whole," Hay wrote. "A commitment to environmental stewardship leads to economic success that allows us to support the communities where we work and live. For us, sustainability is not an alien concept that requires us to force-fit our business practices into a new paradigm. On the contrary, sustainability is the way we have been operating for decades, long before the term became fashionable in corporate responsibility circles. We don't know how to do business any other way."