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NextEra commissioned 5 GW of renewables and storage in 2022, ups growth plan

NextEra CEO John Ketchum announced that the company invested $19 billion in renewables and storage deployment last year. He expects NextEra to place approximately 32,700 MW to 41,800 MW in service between 2023 and 2026.
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NextEra Energy, the parent company of Florida Power & Light and the largest developer of clean energy in the U.S., said it deployed 5,000 MW of new renewable energy resources and energy storage in 2022, while adding 8,000 MW of projects to its pipeline.

NextEra reported what the company called "strong" full-year financial and operation results, despite facing supply chain constraints, inflationary pressures, and higher interest rates. NextEra reported earnings growth of nearly 14% from 2021.

NextEra CEO John Ketchum announced that the company invested $19 billion in renewables and storage deployment last year. He expects NextEra to place approximately 32,700 MW to 41,800 MW in service between 2023 and 2026.

"This terrific performance… is a testament to the strength and resiliency of our team and our competitive advantages, and I am extremely pleased with what we accomplished in 2022," Ketchum said in a statement.

Ketchum added that NextEra is emboldened by the Inflation Reduction Act to continue deploying renewables and storage assets.

In 2022, Florida Power & Light placed approximately 450 MW of solar in service. Beyond solar, construction on FPL's green hydrogen pilot at Okeechobee Clean Energy Center remains on schedule as it continues to advance toward its projected commercial operation date later this year.

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Last year, NextEra unveiled its "Real Zero" goal, which calls for clean energy investments to eliminate all Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions across its operations by no later than 2045. The company also committed to eliminating carbon emissions without the need for offsets.

As the largest producer of electricity in the U.S., NextEra said it also aims to help decarbonize the U.S. power sector through continued investments in wind, solar, battery storage, green hydrogen, and other renewable energy developments. They said the plan won't raise costs for customers.

The plan uses NextEra’s 2005 emissions as a baseline, setting target reduction rates of 70% by 2025, 82% by 2030, 87% by 2035, and 94% by 2040.

The company said it is also intending to provide greater transparency to its Scope 3 emissions, the indirect emissions throughout the value chain, by working with supply chain partners as well as customers on solutions to reduce and, ultimately, eliminate those emission sources.

A significant portion of NextEra Energy’s plan to eliminate carbon emissions is designed to take place at Florida Power & Light, which serves more than 12 million Floridians.

Florida Power & Light's Manatee Energy Storage Center was the largest energy storage project completed in 2021, according to S&P. (Courtesy: Florida Power & Light)

FPL plans to reach these interim targets through further modernization of its generation fleet, which it said would be comprised of a mix of solar, battery storage, existing nuclear, green hydrogen, and other renewable sources.

As natural gas generation is reduced, customers would benefit from increased cost certainty in their electric bills as fuel price volatility would decrease over time until it is a negligible factor by 2045, NextEra said.

That volatility was showcased during recent extreme weather events in Florida.

Florida Power & Light has asked regulators to approve a $2.1 billion fuel under-recovery charge and another $1.3 billion in storm damage expenses. A typical 1,000 kWh residential bill for customers in peninsular Florida would go up by around 10% in April, the utility said. A typical, 1,000 kWh residential bill for customers in the northwest Florida panhandle would go up around 8%.

Duke Energy Florida has also asked for help from regulators to recover fuel costs. The utility asked in a filing to recover around $795 million in net fuel costs, and another $442.1 million for storm restoration work, mostly associated with Hurricanes Ian and Nicole.

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