North Coast Solar Stocks

April 23, 2009

FPL Group Signs Solar Power Supply Agreement with SunPower Corp.

Filed under: FPL, SPWR — Tags: , , , , — Jason @ 8:30 am

SunPower Will Also Establish a Florida R&D Center If the State Continues a Robust Solar Program

Thursday April 23, 2009, 8:30 am EDT

JUNO BEACH, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–FPL Group (FPL) and Silicon Valley’s SunPower Corp. (SPWRA, SPWRB) today announced a supply agreement for SunPower’s high-efficiency solar panels and its SunPower® Tracker technology beginning in 2010 through 2012. In addition, SunPower has separately committed to locating a research and development center in Florida if the state continues its robust solar program.

Under the terms of the agreement, SunPower will supply its high-efficiency solar photovoltaic panels and proprietary tracking systems to FPL Group subsidiaries Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) and NextEra Energy Resources.

“Our agreement with SunPower for competitively priced panels and systems represents a key milestone in the execution of our solar strategy. For NextEra Energy Resources, this agreement will further advance our solar development efforts in key markets such as Colorado, California, Arizona, and New Jersey. In addition, assuming continued support by Florida’s legislative and regulatory leadership for the deployment of solar power in Florida, this agreement benefits the state through the creation of more clean energy jobs and will help to ensure that our utility customers in Florida will get the best pricing and technology available for solar projects. SunPower’s success on the construction of the DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center makes us confident in furthering this important relationship,” FPL Group President and COO Jim Robo said.

SunPower will also locate a research and development center employing up to 50 employees in Florida if the state government continues to support the deployment of additional solar energy. SunPower will work with FPL and the state to identify a suitable location for such a facility. Continued strong demand in Florida also could lead to manufacturing and distribution centers for solar panels and tracking systems being located in the state as well.

“FPL Group is the leader in providing renewable energy, having invested nearly $10 billion in growing that business. It’s already the world leader in deploying utility-scale solar and we believe that it will continue to be a driving force in the industry. We’re delighted to expand and strengthen our already successful partnership,” said SunPower CEO Thomas H. Werner.

Florida Projects

SunPower is currently working with FPL to build its DeSoto and Space Coast Next Generation Solar Energy Centers, which is bringing commercial-scale solar photovoltaic power to Florida for the very first time.

At 25 megawatts, the DeSoto plant, currently under construction, will be the largest photovoltaic solar facility in the nation when it is completed at the end of this year. The DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center will use 90,000 photovoltaic panels on 180 acres of land and provide enough electricity to power more than 3,500 homes, which is more than 20 percent of the population in DeSoto County.

Common on rooftops, solar photovoltaic is the technology most people envision when they think of solar energy. Photovoltaic panels convert sunlight directly into electricity, which can be fed onto the electrical grid without the need of a turbine generator. Technological advances are now making photovoltaic panels practical on a large scale.

The DeSoto Next Generation Solar Energy Center will use SunPower’s solar panels, the highest-efficiency solar that is commercially available today, with its proven Tracker technology. The Tracker automatically follows the sun’s movement throughout the day, increasing sunlight capture by up to 25 percent over similar fixed systems. The facility is providing significant economic benefits to DeSoto County, creating more than 200 jobs during peak construction and providing more than $2 million in annual tax revenues by the end of 2010 to help boost the local economy.

The Space Coast Next Generation Solar Energy Center will also use SunPower’s high-efficiency solar panels and will commercially deploy its latest solar panel technology. This innovative technology will provide more electricity at a lower cost and will further solidify SunPower’s position as the world leader in producing the most efficient solar panels.

DeSoto and Space Coast are two of three solar projects representing 110 megawatts of solar power that FPL is building in Florida as a result of the commitment of Gov. Charlie Crist, the Florida Legislature and Florida Public Service Commission to promote renewable energy in the state.

Together, the three sites will prevent the release of nearly 3.5 million tons of greenhouses gases over the life of the projects, which is the equivalent of removing 25,000 cars from the road per year, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The three projects will make Florida No. 2 in the nation – after California – in generating electricity from the sun.

“With the continued leadership and commitment of Gov. Crist, the Legislature and the PSC, we can expand our deployment of clean solar energy solutions that create jobs now and that begin to address the urgent problem of climate change that, without action, threatens the future of our state,” Robo said.

FPL Group: Energy Solutions for the Next Era

FPL Group is a leading clean energy company with 2008 revenues of more than $16 billion, approximately 39,000 megawatts of generating capacity, and more than 15,000 employees in 27 states and Canada. Headquartered in Juno Beach, Fla., FPL Group’s principal subsidiaries are NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, the largest generator in North America of renewable energy from the wind and sun, and Florida Power & Light Company, which serves 4.5 million customer accounts in Florida and is one of the largest rate-regulated electric utilities in the country. Through its subsidiaries, FPL Group collectively operates the third largest U.S. nuclear power generation fleet. For more information about FPL Group companies, visit these Web sites: http://www.FPLGroup.com, http://www.NextEraEnergyResources.com, http://www.FPL.com.

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