PSC turns off proposed FPL gas pipelineby Dara Kam | October 6th, 2009
The Public Service Commission turned down Florida Power & Light Co.’s request to build a $1.5 billion natural gas pipeline and asked the Juno Beach-based utility to rebid the project.
After a day discussing the issue, the four-member panel agreed unanimously to close the case.
Today’s PSC decision essentially puts FPL back to square one and orders the Juno Beach-based utility to rebid the 300-mile pipeline that would supply natural gas to two new power plants in Riviera Beach and Cape Canaveral.
FPL did not show that their $1.5 billion pipeline proposal was the most cost-effective and reliable way to get the natural gas to the plants, the PSC ruled.
FPL President Armando Olivera, who flew to Tallahassee on one of the utility’s corporate jets to attend the meeting, disagreed.
“The Commission effectively denied the clear need for this investment and required that the entire process start over in order to go forward,” Olivera said in his statement. “All the evidence indicated that the Florida EnergySecure Line would be the most cost-effective and reliable method of increasing the supply of clean natural gas for our customers, diversifying the source of natural gas production beyond the Gulf of Mexico and enhancing the reliability of the electric system that serves half the population of Florida.”
The pipeline project would also have created 7,500 jobs and generated about $400 million in property tax revenues for the state, FPL contends.