The Florida Public Service Commission has authorized Florida Power and Light Co. to set up a two-year green pricing research and development project under a settlement agreement between the utility and the state Legal Environmental Assistance Foundation.
The order allows FP&L to recover from all ratepayers up to $475,000 in administrative costs associated with the experiment. The commission had approved the program as proposed by the utility in an earlier ruling, but reviewed the matter further because of a complaint by LEAF.
The program will test customer response to green pricing offers. The utility will solicit contributions from its customers, to help purchase, install, maintain and operate photovoltaic modules on the FP&L system. Except under limited circumstances, photovoltaic modules are not cost-effective due to high initial costs, according to the commission. It said that with voluntary customer contributions, however, the utility can tailor the level of photovoltaic investment to the degree of customer interest.
Under the agreement with LEAF, FP&L also will create a corporate statement in support of "clean renewable energy sources" and will establish criteria for defining the success of the new green pricing experiment. The utility also agreed to consider all net benefits from capacity deferral in determining cost-effectiveness for the program. Finally, it will adjust its billing system to allow monthly payments for contributions from customers. The agreement will end if retail competition is introduced in the utility's service territory. Re FP&L, Docket No. 960624-EG, Order No. PSC-97-0528-FOF-EG, May 7, 1997 (Fla.P.S.C.).