President Barack Obama was one of the attendees of the commissioning of Florida Power & Light’s 25MW solar array – the largest in North America. The DeSoto, Florida plant is equipped with more than 90,000 SunPower c-Si modules and will provide energy for more than 3,000 homes.
The presence of President Obama at the opening marks the importance of the plant’s establishment, as he has long been a proponent of renewable power, and solar power in particular. His Recovery Act fund has bestowed a grant of $200 million on FPL’s ‘Energy Smart Florida’ project as part of the Obama administration’s $3.4 billion funding for such projects.
‘Energy Smart Florida’ is an FPL initiative that aims to build a more intelligent network that can detect problems and automatically reconfigure the grid to minimize outages. Besides this new $200 million funding, FPL has also invested a $378 million investment, and is expected to create more than 6,000 jobs.
“For the very first time, a large-scale solar power plant – the largest of its kind in the entire nation – will deliver electricity produced by the sun to the citizens of the Sunshine State. And I think it’s about time,” said President Obama. “At this moment, there is something big happening in America when it comes to creating a clean energy economy. But getting there will take a few more days like this one and more projects like this one.”
FPL is also in the process of constructing a 75MW solar thermal facility in Martin County, as well as a 10MW solar facility on the Space Coast.