Florida Utilities Consider Joint Plant Operations to Save Electricity Costs
ORLANDO, Fla., June 13, 2017 – Tampa Electric Co. is evaluating whether to contribute its power generation to a pilot project with three Florida municipal electric utilities, which currently operate as the Florida Municipal Power Pool (FMPP), in an effort to reduce electricity costs for all customers.
FMPP was formed in 1988 by the Orlando Utilities Commission, Lakeland Electric and Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA), a wholesale power supplier to 13 municipal electric utilities. FMPP is always mindful of opportunities to increase member savings through collaborations with other utilities and has sought similar partnerships over the years.
Utilities in the pool operate their combined generating resources as if they were one utility. Electricity demand forecasts are prepared each day for the pool, and generating units are scheduled to go on- and off-line in the most efficient combination to produce electricity at the lowest possible cost.
The FMPP Energy Control Center is responsible for dispatching the pool’s 51 power generators, which are capable of producing approximately 4,700 megawatts (MW). If the pilot project determines the expansion of the pool is feasible, and Tampa Electric joins FMPP, the size of the pool would double, adding an additional 4,800 MW from 17 generators.
“Last year, the pool saved electric customers more than $45 million,” said Tom Reedy, Executive Director of FMPP. “We believe that adding Tampa Electric would produce additional savings.”
The current FMPP members will discuss the potential pool expansion at governing board meetings in June. No timetable has been set for a final decision.
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Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA) is a wholesale power agency owned by 31 municipal electric utilities. FMPA’s mission is to provide power that is competitively priced, reliable and clean, as well as provide value-added services for its owner-customers. The 31 members of FMPA serve approximately two million Floridians and employ nearly 3,300 people.
Lakeland Electric is the third largest public power utility in Florida serving 126,000 customers with production capability of more than 1,100 Megawatts. The utility is also one of the first utilities established in Florida having started operation in 1889.
Orlando Utilities Commission was established in 1923 by a special act of the Florida Legislature. OUC—The Reliable One is the second largest municipal utility in Florida and 14th largest municipal in the country. OUC provides electric, water, chilled water and/or lighting services to 375,000 customers in Orlando, St. Cloud and parts of unincorporated Orange and Osceola counties.
Tampa Electric, one of Florida’s largest investor-owned electric utilities, serves about 730,000 customers in West Central Florida. Tampa Electric is a subsidiary of Emera Inc., a geographically diverse energy and services company headquartered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.