Duke Energy opens new solar power plant in Florida

Published on January 10, 2019 by Dave Kovaleski

© Duke Energy

Duke Energy announced Tuesday the opening of its new 74.9-megawatt (MW) Hamilton Solar Power Plant in Jasper, Fla.

The Hamilton plant is part of the company’s commitment to install or acquire 700 MW of solar energy in Florida through 2022, Duke Energy Florida currently owns and operates nearly 100 MW of solar energy resources throughout its service territory. The carbon-free plant will power more than 20,000 homes in Duke Energy Florida’s service territory.

“Duke Energy solar projects bring the greatest amount of renewable energy online for customers in the most efficient and economical way,” Catherine Stempien, Duke Energy Florida (DEF) state president, said. “Building solar power plants like Hamilton is part of our ongoing strategy to offer sustainable, diverse and smarter energy solutions that our customers have told us they value.”

Ground broke on the Hamilton plant in July 2018, and it was brought online Dec. 22. In 2019, DEF will break ground on the Columbia Solar Power Plant, a 74.9-MW facility in Fort White, Fla. It is expected to be fully operational in March 2020. The Hamilton and Columbia solar power plants are expected to eliminate approximately 645 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions in Florida in their first year of commercial operation.

The Hamilton Solar Power Plant will be a part of the DEF’s new Shared Solar Program. This program allows customers to participate in solar energy without installation on their property. How it works is, customers can subscribe to blocks of clean energy coming from the Hamilton Solar Power Plant and three other participating solar power plants in Taylor, Suwannee, and Osceola counties.

Duke Energy Florida provides energy to approximately 1.8 million customers in the region.