Fla. Power Pool Lowers Costs, Improves Reliability for 25 Yrs.
Like a car pool for power plants, municipal utilities work together to benefit customers
ORLANDO, Fla., July 1, 2013 – Consumers in several Florida cities have enjoyed lower electricity costs and enhanced service reliability for 25 years thanks in part to a joint effort among municipal electric utilities to share their power-generating resources.
This program, known as the Florida Municipal Power Pool, began operation on July 1, 1988. The Pool includes the power-generating resources of Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA), Lakeland Electric and Orlando Utilities Commission (OUC). Including utilities served by FMPA and OUC, the Pool serves the combined electric needs of 20 communities in Florida.
The Pool functions much like a car pool, enabling the utilities to combine their resources efficiently to meet a shared need. Like sharing a ride to work, the utilities share their fleet of power plants, power purchase contracts and transmission lines to economically and reliably produce electricity.
The benefits of this shared operating arrangement allow utilities to:
- Reduce Costs: Like cars, some power plants use fuel more efficiently than others. By drawing from a shared pool of power production assets, Pool members can use the most efficient, economical power resources available at any time.
- Maximize Efficiency: Working together also enables the utilities to optimize the use of resources. Just like filling all available seats in a car pool lowers the shared cost of gas for all participants, maximizing the utilization of generation resources helps Pool participants make the most of their diverse resources.
- Support Reliability: In a car pool, participants have more options if one of their cars breaks down. In the Power Pool, if a power plant is offline for maintenance or repair, other Pool generating resources can fill the need.
“When it comes to saving money for our customers, we’re willing to do what it takes,” said FMPA General Manager and CEO Nicholas P. Guarriello. “Like a car pool, the Power Pool requires communication and coordination, but the benefits for our customers far outweigh the costs. The Pool has been a tremendous success for 25 years.”
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Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA) is a wholesale power company owned by 31 municipal electric utilities. FMPA provides economies of scale in power generation and related services to support community-owned electric utilities. The members of FMPA serve approximately two million Floridians.