The initiative has drawn opposition from a coalition including major electric utilities and has spawned a competing solar ballot proposal. That proposal, spearheaded by the group Consumers for Smart Solar, is awaiting a review by the Supreme Court.
Consumers for Smart Solar includes two ex-lawmakers, a Jacksonville tea-party founder and an ex-chairman of the Florida Public Service Commission.
As some countries prepare to generate solar-powered electricity at half the cost of its production in the U.S., assumptions that generating electricity with natural gas or coal is less expensive or more efficient than solar power are rapidly becoming untenable.
Duke Energy’s proposal to double solar capacity in Florida to 500 megawatts comes as as a coalition seeking to allow Florida businesses and property owners to sell limited amounts of solar energy has taken another step toward getting its proposal on the 2016 ballot.
FPL, which provides electricity to most residences and businesses in Palm Coast and Flagler County, reported net income, or profits, last year of $1.52 billion, or $3.45 a share, up from $1.35 billion, or $3.16 a share, in 2013.
Backers of the initiative said during a news conference in Tallahassee that they are using the constitutional amendment route because well-funded utilities have repeatedly lobbied the Legislature and the Florida Public Service Commission against expanding solar and other alternative-energy choices.
Hunter S. Watson, 24, of 1636 South Daytona Avenue in Flagler Beach was arrested and charged with grand theft and burglary Thursday in connection with a series of thefts that allegedly included a golf cart and a solar panel that belongs to the city of Palm Coast.
According to the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative network better known as ALEC, our solar panels make us “free riders.” What? Yes, according to ALEC, an organization that specializes in getting the right-wing agenda written into state laws, people like me who invest in energy-efficiency and shrinking our carbon footprints ought to be penalized, writes Isaiah J. Poole.